Broadcasting in India started with private initiative by Radio Clubs in the cities of Mumbai (Bombay), Kolkata (Calcutta),Chennai (Madras) and Lahore, during the year 1923. The British Government thereafter constituted the Indian State Broadcasting Service in 1935 under the charge of a Controller of
Broadcasting to plan, implement, and supervise the broadcast efforts in the Indian sub-continent, which took the name All India Radio (AIR) in 1936. As on date, All India Radio has a total number of 414 Radio Stations with 600 transmitters to carry the programmes of both Home and External Services (145 Medium Wave, 48 Short Wave and 407 FM Transmitters).
All India Radio’s broadcast covers an area of 91.90% of the country and the 99.20% of country’s population and it airs in 23 major languages and 146 dialects.
External Services Division of All India Radio ranks high amongst the External Radio network of the world, both in reach and range, daily in 57 transmissions with almost 72 hours covering over 100 countries in 27 languages out of which 15 are foreign and 12 Indian.
News Services Division (NSD) of All India Radio and its 44 Regional News Units (RNUs) puts out over 651 bulletins daily for a total duration of about 56 hours in about 91 languages/dialects through its Home, Regional, External and DTH Services. All India Radio also called ‘Aakashvani’ functions under the umbrella of Prasar Bharati(lndia’s Public Service Broadcaster) alongside Doordarshan (the National Television). As a public service broadcaster AIR has been entrusted with the objective to inform, educate and entertain its listeners, empowering and enriching lives of millions every day. AIR has played a pivotal role tirelessly serving a fast-changing society for the over eight decades.