20 October 2015

New stamps from India - Charkha



Date of Issue : 15 October 2015

On 15th October 2015, India Post released two postage stamps in denomination of Rs. 5 each  and a miniature sheet featuring Gandhi Ji and Charkha.The stamps shows two popular types of Charkha, Peti charkha and Bardoli charkha whereas  the miniature sheet depicts Gandhi ji with Charkha.

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The Charkha or spinning wheel is a device for spinning thread or yarn from natural or synthetic fibres. Spinning wheels appeared in Asia, probably in the 11th century, and very gradually replaced hand spinning with spindle and distaff. The earliest clear illustrations of the spinning wheel come from Baghdad (drawn in 1234), China (c. 1270) and Europe (c. 1280), and there is evidence that spinning wheels had already come into use in both China and the Islamic world during the eleventh century.

The charkha, or spinning wheel, was the physical embodiment and symbol of Gandhi’s constructive program. It represents Swadeshi, self-sufficiency, and at the same time interdependence, because the wheel is at the center of a network of cotton growers, carders, weavers, distributors, and users. It also embodied the dignity of labor, equality, unity, as all volunteers were to spin each day, and finally independence, as British control of India was rooted in control of indigenous industries such as textiles. The tabletop or floor charkha is one of the oldest known forms of the spinning wheel. The charkha works similarly to the great wheel, with a drive wheel being turned by hand, while the yarn is spun off the tip of the spindle. The floor charkha and the great wheel closely resemble each other. With both, the spinning must stop in order to wind the yarn onto the spindle.

Courtesy – Indian Philately Digest

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