Monday, August 16, 2010

The Royal Indian Navy; Pigeon Mail Service

During the Second World War, in 1941 Vice-Admiral Sir Herbert Fitz-Herbert, Flag Officer Commanding, Royal Indian Navy established a ‘Pigeon Mail Service’ in India. Lieutenant Commander Boman Kaikashrov Shroff, a pigeon fancier of Bombay and Officer-in-Charge, Naval Carrier Pigeons, initiated the Mail Service from Lion Gate, Bombay. 
 The Royal Indian Navy’s First Pigeons Flight performed on 6th April 1941, by about 250 (two hundred fifty) Homing Pigeons in Bombay Presidency. They were flown from Kalyan to Bombay, a distance of about 30 miles. Each bird carried eight slips of ‘Messages’ from Sir Roger Lumley, G.C.I.E., T.D., Governor of Bombay to Vice-Admiral Fitz-Herbert, C.B., C.M.G., Flag Officer Commanding, RIN.
 The Flight was organised for charity and the amount realized from the sales of these 2000 “Flown Messages” enclosed in pre-cancelled envelopes were donated to “The Royal Indian Navy War Purpose Fund”. Each envelope for sale to the public was priced at Rs. 2/-
 The Indian Postal stamp commemorating the first ‘Pigeon Post’ organised by the "Royal Indian Navy" in 1941(issued on 3rd. November, 1989).

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