Monday, October 18, 2010

Wavescan Update - Karachi in Pakistan and Hyderbad in India

A few weeks ago, we presented the complete story of radio broadcasting in Karachi, Pakistan, and at the time, we thought that we had discovered all of the available information on the early radio stations in that city. However, we have subsequently come across some additional information that sheds some light on the early radio scene in the city, back in the days when it was part of British India. This new information goes way back into the 1920s, at the time when it was a popular concept in Greater India for local radio clubs to establish their own mediumwave broadcasting stations. For example, back during this era, several local radio clubs established small radio broadcasting stations in such places as Lahore (VUL), Dehra Dun (VUU), Calcutta (2BZ), Rangoon (2HZ), and other places also.
Now, it so happened that a small radio club was established in Karachi, back at the time when it was a small city. Back in the 1920s, an official document was issued each year in the United States under the title Foreign Radio Broadcast Stations, in which active and projected stations were listed worldwide. These documents are held by the Library of Congress in Washington DC.
The 1926 edition of this document lists the Karachi Radio Club, and the station is shown as active with 40 watts on 425 metres, corresponding to 706 kHz, though no callsign is shown. The 1927 edition of this document shows exactly the same information.
No further listings are given for this small radio station in any known documents anywhere. The available evidence would indicate then that there was indeed a small short-lived mediumwave broadcasting station on the air in Karachi back in the mid 1920s. It would appear that the station was on the air for only a short period of time, and we would guess that the Karachi Radio Club ran out of money, or maybe their patrons left the area for service in other localities.
However, this Karachi radio station now assumes an important significance, because it was surely the first radio broadcasting station on the air in the territory that became Pakistan.
In another recent edition of Wavescan, we presented the full story of radio broadcasting in Hyderabad Deccan, in India. Our correspondent in India, Jose Jacob VU2JOS at the National Institute of Amateur Radio in Hyderabad, sends us an update regarding the active transmitters on air in Hyderabad. This now is the full and uptodate list, giving all of the active transmitters at four different locations:-

* Safiabad Studio Location - City of Hyderabad
10 kW Harris transmitter, 105.6 MHz FM, Gyanvani Service
5 kW Harris transmitter, 101.9 MHz FM, Rainbow Service
10 kW Radio City 91.1 MHz FM

* LB Nagar LP Low Power Site - 1st Location, 10 miles from studios, installed in historic old building
20 kW Harris transmitter, 1377 kHz mediumwave, Hyderabad B Service
10 kW Older BEL transmitter, standby mediumwave unit
50 kW BEL transmitter, shortwave service, dipole antennas
Morning & evening 4800 kHz
Daytime 7140 kHz

* LB Nagar LP Low Power Site - 2nd location, building adjacent to 1st location
2 BEL transmitters at 3 kW each, 102.8 MHz FM, Hyderabad C, VB Service
Commercial FM transmitter 92.7 MHz, Big FM programming

* Hyat Nagar HP High Power Site - 14 miles from studio
2 @ 100 kW BEL transmitters, combined, 738 kHz Hyderabad A Service
(AWR Wavescan/NWS 86 via Adrian Peterson)