Home | Back to Wavescan Index

"Wavescan" is a weekly program for long distance radio hobbyists produced by Dr. Adrian M. Peterson, Coordinator of International Relations for Adventist World Radio. AWR carries the program over many of its stations (including shortwave). Adrian Peterson is a highly regarded DXer and radio historian, and often includes features on radio history in his program. We are reproducing those features below, with Dr. Peterson's permission and assistance.

Wavescan 301, October 1, 2000

Radio Broadcasting in Portuguese Goa

The one-time Portuguese colony of Goa lies on the western coast of India, nearly half way from Bombay to the southern tip of the peninsula.  This small territory was settled by the Portuguese in the year 1510 and was re-incorporated into India in December 1961.

Goa is a fascinating place to visit, with its extended miles of wide ocean beaches, its varied coastal and inland scenery, and its tropical and sub-tropical fruits.  To this day, Goa still exudes a subtle evidence of its earlier European culture, with its Latin style church architecture, its European style of dress, its Portuguese Konkani music, and the occasional usage of the Portuguese language.

On many occasions I have visited favored Goa.  I have swum at its beaches, I have jogged the entire 65 mile coastline, I have shopped in its exotic bazaars, I have eaten in its restaurants, and I have visited its radio stations.

It was back on May 28, 1946 that the first experimental radio broadcasts went on the air in old Goa.  This radio program service was radiated from a 500 watt transmitter operated by the Post & Telegraph Office.  It was on the air for only a short period of time.

A regular broadcasting service was inaugurated in 1949 using a temporary 1 kW. shortwave transmitter in Panjim, the small capital city.  This unit was located at the radio studios of what became Emissora de Goa, on a hill overlooking the city.  The current studios and offices of All India Radio in Goa incorporated the older studio buildings at the same site.

During the following year an additional 2.5 kW. mediumwave transmitter was installed at the studio location, and a country transmitter base was constructed some 6 miles from Panjim.  Over a period of time, two shortwave transmitters and one mediumwave were installed at this country location.

During the year 1961 a 50 kW. shortwave transmitter was installed, and this unit made test broadcasts on three different channels, beamed towards Africa, the Persian Gulf, and the Far East.

With the changing winds of fortune, Emissora de Goa finally left the air and closed down forever at 8:00 am on December 18, 1961.  Less than two months later, All India Radio came on the air from the same studios, though with only one transmitter, the 5 kw. mediumwave unit on 880 kHz.

It should be remembered that the first broadcasts in Southern Asia of the familiar AWR program, "Voice of Prophecy," went on the air from station CR8AA, the old Emissora de Goa, in the year 1950.  The half hour broadcasts of the English language "Voice of Prophecy" were on the air from Goa for two years, though this programming was subsequently transferred to the Commercial Service of Radio Ceylon in Colombo.

So what happend to Emissora de Goa, R. Goa afterwards?  Well, the studios and offices on the hill overlooking Panjim have been rebuilt twice and are in use today by All India Radio.  There is a new shortwave base out in the country containing two transmitters at 250 kw. which are in use for the General Overseas Service of All India Radio.  And what about the old radio base out in the country?  I visited this location many years ago, and all that was left at that time was some wreckage from one of the old buildings and lots of overgrown grass. 

[Jerry Berg has provided scans of his 1961 QSL card and 1960 letter from Emissora de Goa]