After losing 4.5 lakh mobile users upto end of September 2016 due to almost three-month long mobile and internet ban, Jammu and Kashmir has now again crossed the mark of 1 crore active cell phone users owing to consumer switchover from pre-paid to post-paid and arrival of new market player Reliance Jio.
According to recently released data by Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI), JK has added 8,54,783 postpaid mobile connections in the month of October only.
The total active mobile connections in JK at end of October 2016 were 1,04,28,635, the highest ever number of mobile subscribers in the state. According to TRAI data, the state has topped the October pan-India list registering a growth rate of 8.93 per with an increase in mobile in tele-density from 77.67 in September 2016 to 84.47 in October, 2016.
JK had lost more than 4.5 lakh mobile subscribers during the 2016 unrest from July to end of September, declining its mobile subscription base from 1,00,24,572 active connections in June,2016 to 95,73,852 active connections in September,2016. However, due to conversion of prepaid to postpaid as the government continued ban on calling from prepaid telephones for a prolonged time upto end of October. The ban on prepaid mobile internet still continues which is forcing more and more people to convert their cell phone connections from prepaid to postpaid resulting in regain of lost connections. But, the major addition to the mobile subscriber base has come from Reliance Jio which as per the TRAI report has added 4,10,891 subscribers in JK during October, 2016,helping the state to cross the one crore subscriber mark.
In June, 2016 the state, for the first time had created a record by crossing the milestone of 1 crore active mobile connections. In June alone, the state added 1,50,005 new connections. However, the de-growth started in July as government snapped the entire mobile and internet connectivity following killing of popular Hizb Commander Burhan Wani. 1,71,271 mobile connections got deactivated in July and trend continued for two more months after that. As using mobile phones was not possible and subscribers could not even do recharging,the disconnections prevailed.
In August, according to TRAI report the situation was even worse. The second month of uprising saw the state loosing 2,21,430 mobile connections, indicating the gravity of the situation. The overall subscriber base in the state came down to 96,31,871. Even in September, JK witnessed a degrowth of -0.60 per cent due to suspension of mobile services losing more than 58,000 susbcribers.
In terms of company wise subscriber data of October Bharti had 3324153 subscribers, Reliance 968492, Vodafone 907325, Idea 554082 , Aircel 2771757 while BSNL had 1491935 subscribers.