Monday, July 23, 2012

All India Radio: Akashvani turns 85, virtually unnoticed by its management

NEW DELHI: One of the largest audio networks in the world, All India Radio has completed 85 years today.
Though radio had commenced in the country around four years earlier as a private enterprise of the Radio Club of Bombay,the Indian Broadcasting Company Limited, which later came to be known as All India Radio, was set up on 23 July 1927 as a collaborative venture by the Government of India.

However, it was only in 1936 that AIR formally began broadcasting programmes for the common man and the name All India Radio aka Akashvani evolved in 1956.

Although no formal function was held today, as Akashvani generally observes 12 November as Broadcasting Day. Mahatma Gandhi had visited the station's Delhi Kendra for the first and only time that day.

When India attained Independence in 1947, AIR had a network of six stations and a complement of 18 transmitters. The coverage was 2.5 per cent of the area and just 11 per cent of the population. Rapid expansion of the network took place post Independence.

AIR today has a network of 277 stations across the country, reaching nearly 92 per cent of the country’s area and 99.19 per cent of the total population. AIR originates programming in 23 languages and 146 dialects.

(Source :

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