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Home / Business / Bharti Airtel scraps entry-level prepaid plan of Rs 49

Bharti Airtel scraps entry-level prepaid plan of Rs 49

This move by the country’s second largest telecom operator comes just days after it increased the cost of some of its postpaid plans
Representational image.
Representational image.
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Our Special Correspondent   |   Mumbai   |   Published 29.07.21, 01:26 AM

Bharti Airtel on Wednesday scrapped its entry-level prepaid plan of Rs 49, with the minimum recharge now fixed at Rs 79, the first entry-level tariff hike in two years.

This move by the country’s second largest telecom operator comes just days after it increased the cost of some of its postpaid plans.

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In the Rs 79-pack, Bharti is offering 200MB data and talk time worth Rs 64 at the rate of one paise per second for both STD and local calls. It comes with a validity of 28 days. The revision is effective from July 29. Airtel had 352.9 million subscribers in April, according to Trai data.

“The company’s prepaid packs will now start from Rs 79  and offer up to four times more outgoing minutes of usage along with double data. The change is in line with the company’s focus on offering superior connectivity solutions,” Bharti Airtel said in a regulatory filing to the stock exchanges.

The announcement sent Airtel’s shares rising over 5 per cent. On the BSE, the Bharti Airtel scrip ended 5.08 per cent, or Rs 27.45, higher at Rs 567.90.

With pre-paid customers accounting for 95 per cent of its subscribers, the higher entry-level package should raise Airtel’s average revenue per user (ARPU). Analysts said it could also result in other players such as Vodafone Idea following suit. 

It is not immediately clear whether Jio will do the same. The cheapest plan under Reliance Jio is Rs 75 — for its JioPhone users — which comes with a validity of 28 days and 3GB data.

Bharti Airtel chairman Sunil Mittal has been saying that the industry’s tariffs need to go up amid “tremendous stress” in the telecom sector.



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