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India`s 160-yr-old telegram service to end today

Last Updated: Sunday, July 14, 2013 - 10:46

Zee Media Bureau

New Delhi: The country`s last telegram will be sent out on Sunday as the operations of the 160-year-old telegram service are all set to discontinue from tonight.

The decision to stop the telegram services was taken after Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) decided to discontinue with the services.

The services on Sunday will start at 8 am and the last of the telegram will be sent out before 9 pm tonight.
State-run telecom firm BSNL has decided to discontinue telegrams following a huge shortfall in revenue. The service generated about Rs. 75 lakh annually, compared with the cost of over Rs. 100 crore to run and manage it.

The use of telegrams has declined with the spread of mobile phones and the Internet in the country.

Sources at BSNL Delhi had said, "We had asked the government to support the service as it was not commercially viable and the government said the BSNL board should decide on it.

"We have taken a decision to close the service after consultation with the Department of Posts. They also said that there are better options available," the sources said.

The BSNL has instructed that surplus telegraph staff members would be deployed to mobile services, landline telephony, broadband services and shifting could take place within the next 3 months.

Faced with declining revenues, the government had in May 2011, revised the telegram charges after a gap of 60 years. The telegram charges for inland services were hiked to Rs 27/50 from Rs 3/50, 4/50 earlier.

Two months ago, telegram services for overseas communication were withdrawn by BSNL.

(With PTI Inputs)

First Published: Sunday, July 14, 2013 - 09:11
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