First Day Cover
Specially printed First Day Covers were brought out for the first issues of the Archaeological Series and the Five year Plan Series on 15th August 1949, and 26th January 1955, with special cachet postmarks to go with them. For subsequent issues in both the series, however ,no F.D.Cs. or special postmarks were provided.
Information Folders containing facsimiles of all the issues were also bought out for both the series. While the folder for the Archaeological Series was in English only, two Folders were brought out for the Five Year plan Series-one in English and the other in Hindi.
Though no official F. D. C. or Folder was brought out for the Map Series issues of 1st April 1957, a special cachet postmark was provided for the first day of use of those stamps. Subsequent issues of the series could, however, be cancelled with post office date-postmarks only.
In respect of the Fourth Definitive Series (1965-75), dated F. D. Cs._with different designs,,were brought out for all the issues (except the 4p.and 25p.,stamps),but these were cancelled with normal date-stamps only. But 4p.,15p.,25p.,and Rs 10 issues, Information Sheets were also brought out for all the denominations.
For the Fifth Definitive Series(1975-79), undated standard F. D. Cs in 2 sizes(but with the same design)were provided for all the issues. The earlier issues in the series upto the middle series upto middle of 1976 were cancelled with date-postmarks only,but for the later issues, the caption 'First Day of issue' was added to the date-stamps. Folders were issued for all the stamps in the series.
Two undated standard F. D.Cs, with an enlarged stamp-designs at left, were provided for issues in the Sixth Definitive Series.(1980-86), and for the Special Definitives featuring Pandit Nehru and Gandhi-one without a background for the stamp. and the other with it Stamps affixed to these covers were cancelled with the postmark 'First day of issue'. No Folders were issued for any of the stamps in this series.
It should be mentioned, though standard F.D.Cs (without dates mentioned) were bought out for issues of Fifth and Sixth Definitive Series, in the absence of adequate supplies of these at the Philatelic Bureaux, collectors were often forced to take the postmarks on plain commercial envelopes.
For issues of the day Seventh Definitive Series(1986- ), specially designed but undated First Day Covers were brought out use with sets of stamps issued on, particular dates. No Folders were issued for any of the stamps in this Series.