National Audio Archives Survive Radio Pakistan Fire Scare

Posted on October 31, 2007
Filed Under >Owais Mughal, Culture & Heritage, Disasters, TV, Movies & Theatre
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Owais Mughal

On October 28, 2007 there was a news of fire at the Radio Pakistan building in Karachi. The fire completely burnt 14 studios and the switchboard.

According to estimates the monetary loss runs in millions. The building itself is almost 100 years old but the Radio Station had moved to this building in 1950. Luckily the precious national radio archives of Pakistan of more than 60 years remained safe at the first floor. For some time there was also concern about a few historic items being lost to the fire. First there was a chair and table set used by the first Prime Minister of Pakistan Liaquat Ali Khan to address the nation. Second and third were the pianos that were used to compose the tune of Pakistan’s national anthem.
Today’s news update in Jang tells us that the chair used by Liaquat Ali Khan got damaged by fire but is repairable. Both pianos are safe. One was out of the building at the time of fire as it was sent out for repairs last week. The other piano remained un-damaged in the fire. I guess, we have been lucky that the fire spared our national collectibles, especially the radio archives. May be it is high time that pianos and furniture of historic value should be shifted to a museum or better fire safety measures be taken at the Radio Pakistan building. On another note, this may be of interest to our readers that despite raging fires, broadcast from Radio Pakistan Karachi remained off air for 30 seconds only.

8 responses to “National Audio Archives Survive Radio Pakistan Fire Scare”

  1. Owais Mughal says:

    A letter to the editor in Nov 10, 2007’s Dawn on the same topic Here:

  2. Dr Ghulam Nabi Kazi says:

    Razi has a good point. Some years ago I went there to record an interview and felt that I was back in 1950. The authorities should invest more in such heritage protected buildings and make them museums and tourist resorts. Who listens to radio anyway. If you are in a car maybe you will listen to FM101. Nevertheless the archives are truly precious and remnant of an era that will never come back.

  3. Syed Fareed Ali says:

    Good idea to remove the historical items to a museum where they can be preserved and also people can see them. This should be done immediately

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