Postal forgery for the Day of Peace

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postal forgery

postal forgery, note the lack of screen, and uncoloured area, which was possibly a foreign body on the photocopier

genuine, postally used

 This is a postal forgery of the 2005 issue, which celebrated the International Day of Peace. Children are planting a flower, formed of many flags. I don’t know how accurate the flags are, it’s where a designer can make a mistake. But this stamp has been copied perhaps by colour photocopier, reperforated, in a very rough gauge and passed off for registered mail at Nizamabad Night PO, 19-8-06. Apparently, only four copies have been recorded. 

genuine copy shows the screening applied to each colour plate quite clearly

Here is one of the gems of Indian philately, the Four Annas of 1854, lithographed in the Office of Captain Thullier and printed in two operations, in two colours. Discovered in an old collection in a local stamp fair. This surely is too good to be true! 

Well, the word ‘SPECIMEN’ on the back tells us swiftly that this is not the real thing. And yet… careful study of the head and frame show that this stamp is a totally faithful printing of the third die of the head, and second die of the frame. Every dot is right. It is a light, clear vermilion and pale blue print. 

Thomas K. Tapling

Thomas Keay Tapling, 1855-1891

But the underprint, as this overprint on the back is known, is also faithfully and precisely recorded, in the classic ‘Stamps of India’ by Jal Cooper, where he deals with the known underprints to these issues of 1854-5. So we have a stamp that appears to have been printed from the original stones, and an underprint, which was presumably intended to distinguish it from the original issue, that is also recorded, and has thus been known since Jal Cooper wrote his book in the 1940s. 
So what is the story of this item? 

In another important source for information on Indian stamps, the Robson Lowe Encyclopaedia, we have a listing, starting on p153, of the Essays Proofs and Reprints of the First Issue.