Even though the Central Government’s decision to shut down telegram service has not gone down well with the people, in Sambalpur telegram died a premature death with bookings closed since Friday.
Even though it was decided by the Central Government that the telegram services would be stopped from July 15, it was widely publicised in the national media that telegram would be received by the post offices till 9 pm on Sunday.
In order to preserve it as a memorabilia, many people turned up at the BSNL office here to send telegrams on Friday. While some wanted to send it to their beloved ones, many others waited to send telegrams to their children to enable them to preserve it as a piece of history.
But they had to return dejected as they were told that the service had been closed and it cannot be provided on Saturday and Sunday which are holidays of the Central Government.
Unfortunately, the man heading the Departmental Telegram Office (DTO), Sambalpur here said since he was out in Berhampur, he could not tell why bookings were not taken on Friday. However, he said that it was closed on Saturday and Sunday on account of holiday.
He tried to explain that their server had stopped receiving messages and that there was little he could do. A lot of messages was pending and hence bookings were not being accepted, he added.
Introduced in 1850 in India and once the only way to inform near and dear ones about both happy and sad news, many standing in the queue felt that it should have closed down on August 15 to coincide with Independence day. Even though the Department feels that it has outlived its age at the time of SMS, internet and e-mail used for communication, the fact remains that it continues to be in demand among people particularly the migrants, who can barely afford a mobile.