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Created on Jul 16, 1995; last modified Feb 5, 1999.

History of Communications


In 1787 an agent was appointed in Egypt to take care of dispatches between England and India. In the same year, a Postmaster was appointed in Bombay, responsible for mail between the Presidency towns. In 1794 a General Post Office was set up in Bombay and in 1798 there was a regular monthly mail service between England and Bombay.

By 1825 a system of dak runners took mail between Bombay and Pune. In 1832 a Post Office was set up for this at the residence of the Junior Magistrate of the Police in Byculla. In 1852 Sir Bartle Frere introduced postage stamps while he was the Governor of Sind. The Indian Postal Act was passed in 1856, and the Money Order introduced ten years later.


In 1852 the first telegraph line was laid between Bombay and Calcutta. By 1860 there were five lines from Bombay to the rest of the country. The first telegraph connection between Bombay and Europe, through Turkey, was completed in 1866. At the same time a cable was laid from Bombay to Aden and Suez. In 1870 the cable connection to London was completed with the laying of a section of an underwater cable.