India's Internet Anniversary

October 20, 2020
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August marked the 25th anniversary of commercial Internet services making their debut in India. 

Among the key people facilitating Internet access was Srinivasan Ramani, a 2014 Internet Hall of Fame inductee. In the early 1980s, Ramani proposed and helped develop an academic network that started with email exchanges and the development of TCP/IP protocols between some of the country’s major cities. 

In a recent piece for LiveMint, several of the people directly involved with the launch of India’s commercial Internet service recalled the unique challenges they had to overcome in the 1990s, even with the groundbreaking work from Ramani and his academic colleagues in the 1980s.

"It was a very primitive precursor of the web," Gopi Garge said. “It’s a single system where you have one telephone line and one modem. You have a set of users who log in one at a time and leave messages, read messages from the others, and then log off. Then somebody else logs on."