The Cellular Operators Association of India (COAI) is reporting the addition of 6.1 million new GSM subscribers in March to take the total to 121.43 million, a 5% increase in a month. Bharti Airtel captured a 30.59% share of the market with 37.1 million customers at the end of March, an increase of 1.7 million compared to February’s figure, followed by BSNL with 27.4 million customers (22.59% of the total). Vodafone’s recent purchase Hutch-Essar had 26.4 million subscribers, taking its market share to 21.78%, while Idea had 14 million customers (11.54%).
‘The spurt in subscriber additions and the overall growth in mobile subscribers during the financial year ending March 2007 has been possible due to industry initiatives, forward looking policies of the ministry and the enabling regulation,’ COAI Director General T V Ramachandran said in a statement. Among all circles, Category C circles witnessed the highest rate of growth at 8.7%, followed by Category B circles at 6%. Within the Category C circles, the highest growth was recorded by Assam (12.4%) and North East (11.2%).