All India Radio renamed as 'Akashwani' but it's Urdu service yet announces that it's All India Radio.
All India Radio (AIR), officially known since 1982 as Akashwani ("Voice from the Sky"), is the national public radio broadcaster of India and a division of Prasar Bharati. Established in 1930, it is the sister service of Prasar Bharati's Doordarshan, the national public television broadcaster. AIR has covered more than 99% of the Indian population as per the latest information given by Minister of Information and Broadcast. All India Radio is the largest radio network in the world. Its headquarters is at the Akashvani Bhavan in New Delhi. Akashvani Bhavan houses the Drama Section, the FM Section and the National Service. Akashvani Bhavan hosts Doordarshan Kendra (Delhi).
Akashwani is a Sanskrit word meaning "celestial announcement," or "voice from the sky/heaven". In Hindu, Jain and Buddhist holy traditions, Akashvanis often featured in stories as a medium of communication from the heavens to mankind.
"Akashvani" was first used in the context of radio by M. V. Gopalaswamy after setting up the nation’s first private radio station in his residence, "Vittal Vihar" (about 200 yards from AIR’s current location in Mysore) in 1936. Akashvani seemed to be an appropriate name for a radio broadcaster and was later adopted as All India Radio's on-air name in 1956.
During the British Raj, broadcasting began in July 1923 with programmes by the Bombay Presidency Radio Club and other radio clubs. According to an agreement of 23 July 1927, the private Indian Broadcasting Company LTD (IBC) was authorized to operate two radio stations; the Bombay station began on 23 July 1927, and the Calcutta station followed on 26 August 1927. However, on 1 March 1930, the company went into liquidation. The government took over the broadcasting facilities, beginning the Indian State Broadcasting Service (ISBS) on 1 April 1930 on an experimental basis for two years, and then permanently in May 1932. On 8 June 1936, the ISBS was renamed All India Radio.
On 1 October 1939, the External Service began with a broadcast in Pushtu; it was intended to counter radio propaganda from Germany directed to Afghanistan, Iran and the Arab nations. When India became independent in 1947, the AIR network had only six stations (in Delhi, Bombay, Calcutta, Madras, Lucknow, and Tiruchirappalli); three radio stations at Lahore, Peshawar and Karachi fell in the share of Pakistan. The total number of radio sets at that time was about 275,000 in India. On 3 October 1957, the Vividh Bharati Service was launched, to compete with Radio Ceylon. Television broadcasting began in Delhi in 1959 as part of AIR, but was split off from the radio network as Doordarshan on 1 April 1976. FM broadcasting began on 23 July 1977 in Chennai, and was expanded during the 1970s .
Today, The External Services Division of All India Radio ranks high amongst the External Radio networks of the world, both in reach and range, daily in 55 transmissions with almost 72 hours covering over 100 countries in 27 languages, out of which 16 are foreign and 11 are Indian.
Department of Posts honoured All India Radio services to the nation during its Silver Jubilee celebration
Issued Date : 08.06.1961
Denomination : 15 Naya Paise