AIRIndia’s national radio broadcaster All India Radio turned 80 today.

Radio broadcasting in British India began in July 1923 by the Radio Club of Mumbai. In July 1923, the government authoritised private Indian  Broadcasting Company LTD (IBC) to operate two radio stations in Mumbai and Calcutta.

However, the company went into liquidation on March 1, 1923, following which the government took over its broadcasting facilities by starting  Indian State Broadcasting Service (ISBS) on 1 April 1930.

ISBS was renamed as All India Radio on June 8, 1930.

On the 80th anniversary of All India Radio here are five interesting facts about India’s “Voice of the Sky”:

1. Akashvani is the largest radio broadcaster in the world.

2. AIR has 418 broadcasting centres and 606 transmitters across the country.

3. Akashvani reaches 108 countries and the programmes are broadcasted in 27 foreign languages including French, Russian and Swahili and Thai.

4. India’s news bulletin was broadcasted on January 19, 1936.

5. According to the latest data, AIR is a Public Broadcaster Service with over 99% area coverage.

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