According to an internal order issued by Akashvani Director-General Vasudha Gupta, Prasar Bharti dropped the name “All India Radio” and immediately substituted it with “Akashvani”.
Elaborating on the decision, Prasar Bharati CEO Gaurav Dwivedi said the decision was made long ago but was not implemented. The latest directive will implement the earlier decision.
The Prasar Bharati (Broadcasting Corporation of India) Act, 1990 refers to “Akashvani” as referring to offices, stations and other establishments, by whatever name, which, until the appointed date, formed part of or were subordinate to the Director General, All India Radio of the Union Ministry of Information and Broadcasting. The Prasar Bharati Act came into effect on November 15, 1997.
“The aforementioned statutory provision which has replaced the name of AIR with ‘Akashvani’ may be brought to the attention of all so that the name and title are in line with the provisions of the Prasar Bharati Act 1990 passed by Parliament,” the internal order said.
The famous poet Rabindranath Tagore referred to All India Radio as “Akashvani” in his poem for the inauguration of the Calcutta shortwave service in 1939.
According to the Prasar Bharati website, a private radio station called Akashvani Mysore was established on September 10, 1935.
Akashvani’s home services include 470 broadcast centres nationwide, broadcasting in 23 languages and 179 dialects, covering 92% of the country’s area and 99.19% of the total population.