CCMs: (Color Control Marks) These are printings of the colors used in the production of the stamps of that particular sheet. Not all sheets of stamps have CCMs on them, but the majority do, as do all recent issues. The CCMs are printed as connected squares, individual squares, rectangles, circles, etc., and are found in different positions on the individual sheets. These markings are very collectible and are often collected in panes of six, eight, ten and even the whole side of the sheet on which they appear. The size of the collected pane is dependent upon the position of the marks and what else might be found near it (Plate Numbers and/or other inscriptions). The positions of the markings on the sheets have varied over the years and there is no fast rule as to where they are found, other than in the margins. Most sheets have only one set of Color Control Marks printed on them, but one stamp, of a set of two stamps, had six sets of markings on the sheet, while the other stamp in the set only had them on one side of the sheet.
PLATE #: (Plate Number) As in the West, many collectors want to collect plate blocks of various stamps. Bangladeshi collectors tend to collect them in panes of six or larger, often keeping the name of the printing house as well in the same block/pane. Most recent stamps do not have plate numbers, thus collectors tend to collect the CCMs. One must not confuse the rubber-stamped numbers (generally black), also found in the margins of the sheets, with the plate numbers. These were applied for keeping track of the number of sheets within the post offices. The numbers are different on each sheet and should not be confused with the Plate numbers. Generally, only one or two plates were prepared for the printing of a particular stamp. In the case of the definitive stamps more were prepared as vast quantities of the stamps were printed and the plates would show wear through use.
PERF.: (Perforation) The postal authorities do not seem to realize the importance of perforation information and continue to list the same perforation for most of the stamps. With reprintings of the definitives, different perforations were used for some of the printings. The first number listed is for the top, horizontal perforations and the second for the vertical, side perforations (i.e. 14 x 15).
IMPERF.: (Imperforate) If imperforate stamps were sold at the post office windows it will be mentioned. Often imperforates were sold illegally, or given to dignitaries and then sold. These have become quite scarce and are eagerly sought after in most instances.
SHEET: The number of stamps in a sheet of stamps.
MIN. SHEET: (Miniature Sheet) A few miniature sheets have been issued that contain a large set of stamps, or all stamps of the same design. These sheets are not Souvenir Sheets and do not have any CCM’s nor Plate Numbers on them. They seldom contain more than 20 stamps.
QUANTITY PRINTED: Of great interest to collectors is the quantity of stamps actually printed. For the early issues, this information was provided in the inserts. Later, the information was not consistently released. Currently, it is seldom given.
DESIGNER: Most of the designers of the postage stamps were/are citizens of Bangladesh. However, there were a few exceptions to this. A few of the printing houses used in-house staff to design the stamps and no individual names are known for these issues. Starting in 200? the P.O. began listing the designer of the cachets on the FDC envelopes, on the back of the envelopes. In some instances they differ from the designer of the stamp even though the designs are very similar.
PRINTER: Various printers in different countries held contracts for printing the stamps until the Bangladesh government was able to print their own stamps.
FAKE: A completely bogus item that was not created by the Post Office Department. These items are generally created to fool the collector and are created by the maker for the purpose of making money.
FDC: (First Day Cover) The Postal Department prepared First Day Covers for nearly every issue, however, they did not prepare them for the definitive and the “SERVICE” sets. Enterprising collectors/dealers stepped in and filled that void for many releases, but not all. The Post Office FDCs all had previously prepared cacheted envelopes, printed by the government. These were not prepared for the definitive issues and those covers that are found are on ordinary envelopes, without a cachet, or in at least in a few instances, with a privately prepared one. Where private cachets are known they are listed under this heading. The one exception to this is the Russian printed definitive set of 21 December 1983. This set was released the same day as a regular commemorative set and some people used that envelope even though the theme is not relevant. The postmark was the same one used for the commemorative set.
The government-printed envelopes are available in the Post Office for several weeks and individuals are able to prepare their own covers during the time the envelopes are available.
For the April 11, 2002, Bangladesh-Japan Relations issue, collectors/dealers in some instances added a subject-related stamp from Japan to the cover.
The cacheted envelopes and cancelling devices are prepared and sent to specific cities prior to the release of the stamps. They are not available in all post offices in the country. Bangladeshi collectors do not consider these non-Dhaka covers as desirable as those cancelled in Dhaka.
Most of the First Day Covers can be found with commemorative postmarks, but some of the early postmarks were similar to those used in other countries and included “FIRST DAY OF ISSUE” as part of the design. However, the majority of the postmarks are commemorative in nature and often include elements relevant to the design of the stamp in them.
With the release of ______ the envelopes had the stationery charge printed on the back of the envelopes at the bottom center. The envelopes were not free to collectors, but were sold by the P.O. This is the first time the charge was printed on them.
For the first time, with the 25 November 2003 “Eid” issue, the designer was listed on the back of the FDC in the bottom left corner. This practice was not consistently used and raised the issue as to what was actually referred to. Was it the designer of the stamp, or of the cachet used on the envelope? On the 5 March 2004 ICC U/19 issue that was prepared, but not issued, it states, “Designer (F.D.C.): Mr. Monirul Ahsan”. This is the only issue that has “(F.D.C.)” after the word “Designer”. This stamp was later issued on 19 July 2006 using the same cacheted envelopes. Only the postmark is of a different design.
FORGERY: A copy of a genuine item, generally made to fool the collector and to make money for the person creating the item.
PMKS. (Postmarks) The cities known where FDCs exist for this issue. The majority of collectors outside of Bangladesh and India, do not know that First Day Covers exist cancelled in different cities. The commemorative postmark designs are the same for all cities but at times the size of the postmark is different. Within each postmark is the name of the respective city. In the newer postmarks, the writing is often so small that one is unaware of this. At the time this list was being compiled, most collectors wanted the Dhaka G.P.O. postmarks which often sell at a premium over the others. The listing of the cities under this category is far from complete and the information difficult to find. Only covers actually seen by the editor have been listed. Hopefully, collectors will provide additional cities for future listing.
The Post Office has generally provided black ink for the cancelling of the covers, but on many early covers purple ink is found on many non-Dacca covers. Later, enterprising collectors/dealers have begun to bring colored ink pads with them and now one finds blue, red, purple and green postmarks on covers from many cities, including Dhaka. To date, no one has put any value or significance on these various colored postmarks, but as the years move forward and new collectors become aware of them, they will most likely be eagerly sought after.
Since black ink was the most commonly used, it is not mentioned unless “black” and other colors were used in the same city. If there is no color in parenthesis after the city, the color was black.
INSERT: Nearly all of the Bangladesh FDCs had an informative insert, either in the form of a card, or a multi-folded piece of paper that was released with information about the stamp features and the subject of the stamp. In a few instances small booklets were prepared instead of the insert that would fit inside of the envelope. Additionally, some of the “inserts” were too large to fit inside of the envelopes, or were small booklets of numerous pages. Because of this, they have been lost or discarded over the years and are very difficult to find.
The early releases only dealt with the salient information about the stamp itself, but later inserts additionally provided information on the subject of the stamp.
The inserts were not automatically provided with each envelopes and some have become quite rare. A major complaint was that postal employees would hand out multiple copies to people and later they would run out of them. At times the inserts would contain wrong information and would be corrected by hand or rubber stamps.
ADDITIONAL: Any additional information about the stamps or covers, such as the existence of Progressive Proofs, essays, etc., is listed under this heading.
SPECIMEN FOR APPROVAL FOLDER: Various presentations were used by the various printers. The most common ones were the stamps and folders prepared by the Bangladesh Government. These folders come in two different sizes for the stamps printed by the Bangladesh Government.
What has been referred to as Type A is the older of the two and measures 6 x 4 3/8 inches, opening to 12 inches (15.2 x 11.2cms., opening to 30.4cms).
Type B measures 5 5/8 x 3 7/8 inches, opening to 11 1/4 inches (13.5 x 9.9 cm, opening to 27 cm.).
These folders each contained one imperf. stamp and were prepared and submitted for approval to the Post Office Department by the printers. They bear one signature and a rubber-stamped statement that reads “Director (Stamp)/Bangladesh Post Office/ D.G.Office, Dhaka – 1000/Bangladesh. These are either in black or in violet-colored ink. The signature is in ink and is above the rubber stamp. Fakes of several issues exist. These were available for some of the stamps in the 1990s and a few years of 2000 and are not difficult to find. Due to the questionable practices of a few individuals, officials and a dealer, some collectors tended to shy away from purchasing them. Many appear to have been created just to sell to collectors.
NUMBERING AND ABBREVIATIONS USED TO DISTINGUISH DIFFERENT STAMPS: It is necessary to number the stamps listed in this catalog to make certain that collectors are referring to the same stamp. Due to copyright reasons, it is not possible to use the numbers of the major catalogs.
The first two numbers indicate the year the stamp was issued.
The number after the hyphen (-) is the number of the stamp, of that type, for that particular year.
The following letters have been used:
No letter means the stamp is a commemorative. Since the majority of stamps issued by Bangladesh are commemoratives, it seemed logical to not use a letter to designate them.
“d” represents a Definitive
“s” a SERVICE overprinted stamp
“i” an imperforate stamp
“ss” a Souvenir sheet
“o” the stamp was only issued in a souvenir sheet but is numbered as a commemorative stamp.
“ms” a miniature sheet, generally of 20 stamps or less, with no CCM’s or Plate Numbers.
“un” means the stamp was unissued
“wi” means the stamp was issued but withdrawn shortly afterward
“L” represents a charity label with a value printed on it, but is not valid for postage
For example: 71-8 would stand for the eighth commemorative stamp issued in 1971.
75-2d would be for the second Definitive stamp issued in the year 1975.
82-9s would be for the ninth SERVICE stamp issued in the year 1982.
01-1ss would be for the first Souvenir Sheet of 2001.
92-1un would be for the first prepared, but unissued, stamp of 1992. Many such stamps reach the philatelic market through illegal means.