BSNL to discontinue 160-year-old telegraph service from July 15

The state-run BSNL decided to discontinue the telegraph service from 15 July, 2013.

The 160-year-old telegraph service faced slow death in the wake of smartphones, emails and SMSs.

As per a circular issued by Shameem Akhtar, senior general manager (telegraph services) BSNL corporate office, New Delhi, the telegraph service will be discontinued from 15 July 2013.

The circular sent to various telecom districts and circle offices denotes that telegram services will be closed from 15 July and as a result all telegraph offices under the management of BSNL will have to stop booking telegrams from 15 July.

The BSNL circular has directed telecom offices to maintain the log books, service messages, delivery slips only for six months from the date of bookings. However, complaints, press reports and other messages from different consumer forums are to be kept for one year.

BSNL sources 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.”

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, PTI reported.

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 was hiked to Rs.27/50 from Rs.3/50, Rs.4/50 earlier. Two months ago, telegram services for overseas communication was withdrawn by BSNL.

Meanwhile, BSNL is expecting its revenues to dip down to Rs 25,384 crore during 2012-13. BSNL’s revenue for 2011-12 was Rs 27,933.5 crore compared with Rs 29,687.62 crore a year ago.

[email protected]