The 163-year old telegram service in the country will operate for the last time today (14-07-2013). The service started at 8 am and will close by 9 pm. The service will not be available from Monday (15-07-2013).
It was such an important mode of communication in those days that revolutionaries fighting for the country’s independence used to cut the telegram lines to stop the British from communicating. Old timers recall that receiving a telegram would be an event itself and the messages were normally opened with a sense of trepidation as people feared for the welfare of their near and dear ones.
State-run telecom firm BSNL (Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited) has decided to discontinue telegrams following a huge shortfall in revenue. The use of telegrams has declined with the spread of mobile phones and the Internet in the country.
In India, the first experimental electric telegraph line was started between Kolkata and Diamond Harbour in 1850 and it was opened for use by the British East India Company the following year. In 1854, the service was made available to the public.