Meet the postman delivering mail across the border

India

16 Apr 2017

Man delivers letters at 14,000 feet between India and China

Bhim Bahadur Tamang, a postal departmental employee, physically delivers letters every Thursday between India and China at the Nathu La pass in Sikkim, all this in the age of social media and digital communication.

The mail usually consists of letters written by Tibetan refugees to their families across the Border.

The exchange on the Indian side takes place every Sunday.

The 1992 agreement

Formally recognizing postal trade

Formally recognizing postal trade

After President R. Venkataraman paid a state visit to China in May 1992, India and China formally recognized the official trade of post from Nathu La pass.

Under the agreement mail is physically exchanged on the Chinese side every Thursday, while it is done on the Indian side every Sunday.

The exchange is not delayed or stopped even during times of bilateral tensions.

A quick transfer

Bhim Bahadur Tamang says the exchange is quick and simple. Bags are exchanged at a postal shed on the Chinese side, registers signed and the process is concluded. Mail to China is vetted and sealed by the Army before it is dispatched for delivery.

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Bhim Bahadur Tamang

China

India

India China Border

Sikkim

Tibet

Army

Nathu La

Nathu La Pass

President R

R. Venkataraman

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