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Post Office Bill 2023 proposing



  Aug 17, 2023

Post Office Bill 2023


Q: What is the Post Office Bill 2023 proposing?

A: The Post Office Bill 2023, introduced in the Rajya Sabha, aims to empower post office employees for national security interests. They can intercept, open, or detain items during transmission. Immunity from liability is provided to these employees, with conditions. Officers can deliver items suspected of duty evasion to customs authorities. The bill emphasizes the post office's exclusive privilege of issuing postage stamps and sets provisions for addressing standards and usage of postcodes. It repeals the Indian Post Office Act, 1898, adapting to the evolving functions of post offices, which now offer diverse services beyond mail delivery.
 

Q: What powers does the bill grant to post office employees?

A: The Post Office Bill 2023 empowers post office employees to intercept, open, or detain items in the interest of national security, public order, emergency, or public safety. The Central Government can authorize officers to exercise these powers through notification. Additionally, post office officers can deliver items suspected of duty evasion to customs or relevant authorities as per the law.
 

Q: How does the bill address liability and charges for services?

A: The bill grants exemption from liability to post office officers for loss, misdelivery, delay, or damage during services, unless fraud or willful misconduct is proven. Those availing post office services are liable to pay charges, and if they refuse or neglect payment, the charges become recoverable similar to arrears of land revenue.
 

Q: What areas does the bill cover beyond mail services?

A: The bill acknowledges the diversification of post office services beyond mail delivery, becoming a platform for various citizen-centric services. It ensures the exclusive privilege of post offices in issuing postage stamps and sets standards for addressing and usage of postcodes.
 

Q: Why is the Indian Post Office Act, 1898, being repealed

A: The Indian Post Office Act, 1898, was designed for mail services provided through post offices. With the evolution of post office functions and the offering of diverse services, the Act is no longer adequate. The new bill seeks to replace it with updated regulations that align with the expanded roles of post offices in delivering modern services.


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