Henry’s Island DXpeidtion was covered by ‘Ei Samay’, a local daily in Bengal from Times of India Group. Below is the English translated version of the publication. Translation was done by veteran member/Dxer of IDXCI Mr. Sudipta Ghose.
It has a striking similarity with an angler waiting for his prize catch of that elusive fish. However, the water body before him is neither a pond nor a stream or sea. It is the vast ocean of ether. A bunch of radio-nuts have congregated in Henry’s Island with fond hope of listening to shortwave or mediumwave radio stations that travels great distances in the sea of ether! Internationally, these people are known as DXers. They have long planned to celebrate the 13th February, the UNESCO sponsored World Radio Day, by trying to receive the signals of a radio station from the Philippines or from a radio station in the remote Indonesian archipelago. This ten member team consists of enthusiasts from Delhi and Tripura apart from those from Kolkata. Though there is wide difference of age between members of this team but their mind is tuned to the same wavelength – heady addiction to pick-up the signals from the unknown radio station in the shortwave radios.
On Sunday, after reaching Henry’s Island the team of radio aficionados have completed the arrangements. Sandipan Basu Mallick of Kolkata is organiser in case of this DXPedition. Apart from him other people from Kolkata are Supratik Sanatani, Babul Gupta and Sudipta Ghose. From Delhi, C. K. Raman and Alokesh Gupta flew in. There is Pradip Kundu from Tripura, a freshly retired school Headmaster as well as Shuvendu Das. These guys are all members of Indian DX Club International. Reaching their destination in early morning, they promptly deployed laptops, DX Radios, books and publications with transmission schedules of radio stations around the world and antennae. Now the wait for signals!
When the medium of radio has almost been pushed into oblivion due to proliferation of Internet and TV, how come these people are having such strong interest in radio? A visibly annoyed Sandipan says – firstly the medium of radio not a rejected one. Even today in villages after villages people tunes their radios. Secondly, we, the DXers are hooked up to signals from distant unknown lands. The DXers pickup radio signals that travel from far far away and then after such reception they identify that signal and determine where it is emanating from. If identification is correct then as a prize a QSL (verification) card is received.
According to the members of this DXPedition team there are several reasons behind their choosing the Henrys Island this time. Due to geographical reasons this area is suitable for receiving signals from the Indonesian Archiapelago, New Zealand and Australia during the night.During the early morning, 0230 to 0300 am, Tagalog language broadcasts from Philippines can be picked up from here. Some of the team members strongly claimed that transmissions from Solomon Island could be heard from here. A prominent member of the gang Supratik Sanatani is an eye surgeon by profession. His mind is also strongly attracted to distant radio signals. He opines that the bird watchers will understand this hobby. They listen to bird calls, we listen to signals.
Delhiihte C. K. Raman, Tripura resident Pradip Kundu vouched that they were hooked to radio listening from the very childhood. Later it was discovered that apart from programme listening radio is more intriguing. Slowly they came to know about the mystic world of the DXers. Afterwards, they became friends quickly with the like minded people of same interest. Today all came here in a group due to the strong pull of radio.Within few hours of arrival at the Henrys Island these DXers could pickup signals from Solomon Islands and Brazilian Radio stations. At the dead of night faint signals were received in Medium Wave from Kampuchea (Cambodia). All of them eagerly looking forward for the next two nights.
Below is the original publication in Bengali