160 Year-Old Telegraph-Telegram Service Passing Into History
No longer will people be able to romance through telegrams just as Raj Kapoor wooed Vyjanthimala in the sixties’ hit movie “Sangam”.
No longer will one be able to book a telegram through a code. For instance, “Heartiest Diwali Greetings” was code 1,”Happy Easter” was code 36, “Many happy returns of the day” was code 5, “May Heaven’s Choicest Blessings be showered on the young couple” was code 16, and so on.
It was a missive that brought both joy and grief, it was the quickest way to communicate. Now, the telecom and IT revolution and improved teledensity have made India’s 163-year-old telegraph system redundant, with the last telegrams being sent out at the close of business hours Monday.
“We have around 1,000 employees left now in 75 offices across the country. They all will be deployed in other BSNL departments like broadband, landline and cellular divisions,” Shameem Akhtar, senior general manager, Telegraph Services of state-owned Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) told IANS.
India owes its telegraph system to its erstwhile British rulers who brought it to the country in 1833 to establish a communication system between their capital Calcutta (now Kolkata) and Howrah. It was expanded across the country in 1853 and even after the arrival of the telephony system in India early in the 20th century, it was the principal means of communications across the vast landmass… FullStory