Jammu: Army Postal Service Corps (APS), the lifeline for delivery of letters to the armed and paramilitary forces, on Tuesday celebrated its 44th anniversary at Udhampur-based Northern Command, with GOC-in-Chief Lt Gen D S Hooda lauding it for proving its mettle during war and peace.
The General Officer Commanding-in-chief Hooda said APS has provided efficient postal services in the Northern Command zone and its spirit is reflected in its motto of 'Mail Milab'.
The corps has a record of outstanding contribution in all operations and has proved its mettle both in times of war and peace, he said.
"Over the past years, APS has made rapid strides in technological advancements thereby leading to a much more efficient system of communication. Army post offices in the Northern Command have been provided with multipurpose counter machines," Hooda said.
"To convert Field Post Offices into troops-friendly establishments, computers and peripherals have been incorporated and modernisation of offices has been undertaken, giving a facelift to the Field Post Offices (FPOs)," he said.
Many FPOs are also working as eMO/ePost Centres to transmit money orders and letters of troops through the internet which has resulted in reduction in time taken in delivery and remittance of money, he said. He said that although the APS came into existence as a separate Corps on March 1, 1972, the FPO is more than 150-year-old.
The first FPO was raised in 1856 initially as a war-time organisation accompanying the Indian Expeditionary Force abroad, thereafter in Jammu and Kashmir operation of 1947-48, the organisation of FPOs was initially affiliated to Army Service Corps and APS personnel were finally declared combatants in 1950.
On July 1, 1969 the collection, transport and delivery of official mail (SDS) was entrusted to APS. APS, the youngest Corps, is an integral part of the Indian Army and functions as an extension of Department of Posts (Ministry of Communication and IT) to meet specific needs of the armed forces, Border Road Organisation and para military forces.