The foundation stone of Baroda Broadcasting Station was laid by Maharaja Pratapsinh Gaekwad on May 1, 1939. The Baroda Station merged with All India Radio (AIR) on December 16, 1948, which was the first former Indian State Station to do so after India became Independent.
On January 10, 1947, Maharaja Pratapsinh Gaekwad did the opening ceremony of Baroda Akashwani Center. Baroda received honor of Senior most centers.
It is said that first office was at Salatwada area, while the broadcasting station was functioned at Samlaya. Then it was shifted to Yash Kamal Building near MSU & after few years it is now located at Akashwani Premises on Makarpura Road with all of it’s instruments, equipment’s & machines.
Famous & legendary artists like Shri Krushna master (Krushnarao Filambrikar) were invited to present National Anthem ‘Vande Mataram’ on this occasion. In pre-independence time, there was ban on singing National Anthem in public, but Maharaja did it by broadcasting it on Radio.
Below is the Quote which he said during first Broadcast:
“This is my Radio Station for my people of the state and therefore, it will start functioning with my country’s National song Vande Mataram“
Famous singers like Ustad Faiyaz Khan, Mirabai Badkar, Maula Baksh Khan,Omkarnath Thakur used to perform their art on Akashwani. Great personalities like Drama producer C.C.Mehta, Manbhatta, Dharmiklal Pandya, Shri Markand Bhatt also gave their prime contribution senior officer Shri R.D Ambegaonkar looked after the management of Akashwani. A fortnightly magazine named ‘Nabhovani’ used to published, and shri Muljibhai Shah was main publisher. Title song of Akashwani composed by Shri. R.D. Ambegaonkar is still used.
Ustad Faiyaz Khan also started broadcasting as staff artist for Rs 150. Total of 250 recording of Khan Saheb were made.
Musical festival were also broadcasted on Aakashwani, and the broadcasting included, the item of all the leading artists of India and a western artist Edian Bolt. Maharaja gave opening to things like knowledge, Entertainment, Sports, Art, Agriculture, Industries, Health, Education for the people of Gujarat.
Also a special program was held on death of Mahatma Gandhi (Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi) & broadcast of ‘Raghupati Raghav Rajaram’ was done with special chorus, led by great musician like Ustad Faiyazkhan, Pandit Omkarnathji, Pandit D V Paluskar & others.