M Rafi Ahmed
At a time when the news of 102 year-old World War II veteran Bob Vollmer retiring after working for nearly 60 years at Indiana Department of Natural Resources in the US last February went viral, comes the Karnataka postal circle honouring a 102 year old postman S K Narasimhamurthy at his home at Bengaluru‘s one of the oldest locality Thyagaraja Nagar in Basavanagudi area during the National Postal week celebrations.What is surprising is that the centenarian is drawing pension for well over 41 years which is more than his service period. He retired on August 31, 1979 as Department Stamp Vendor (DSV) in the cadre of postman at Bengaluru City Head Post Office after a three decade plus unblemished service in the postal department. Notably, he is the only retired surviving postal employee to have crossed 100 in Karnataka state.Centenarian Narasimhamurthy was on cloud nine on seeing the department people and union representatives visiting his home and honouring him with a shawl besides presenting fruits and getting his blessings on the occasion of National Postal Week fete (October 9 to 15). Indeed a memorable moment for him and his family members-two sons and a grandson. Narasimhamurthy’s wife predeceased him.
Shyam, grandson of S K Narasimhamurthy told this scribe that his father S N Sathyanarayan (68) had worked as Group D staff in the postal department at Jai Nagar post office and is now leading a retired life alongwith his grandfather while another son of Narasimhamurthy aged 69 retired from a private company and is a bachelor.On a query about Narasimhamurthy’s last salary, Shyam said that it was just Rs 200 or Rs 300 wayback in 1979 during his retirement and presently his grandfather is getting a monthly pension of Rs 20,000. And his grandfather served his entire service as department stamp vendor although he was categorised under postman cadre. It is generally felt that the centenarian retired postman must be honoured by the Karnataka postal circle atleast with a special cover or stamp as a recognition to his service to the department.
M Rafi Ahmed