One man, 80,000 SIMs

Posted on July 24, 2011  /  3 Comments

I thought the Pakistani man who thought he had 2 SIMs but found 57 had been issued in his name was a story. But India does better, according to NDTV.

A man in Mumbai’s suburb Thane region was found with 80,000 Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) cards. The SIM cards were found at the residence of Anwar Ansari, in Bhiwandi area of Thane.

According to reports, Mr Ansari used to run a racket that facilitated international calls. Mr Ansari has been arrested and the police say they are investigating the case further.

The guy was not single-handedly trying to drive up Indian numbers. Appears the grey market in international termination is alive and well in Thane.


  1. It indicates the demand for budget tariff to call overseas. India’s current international gateway regime has evidently failed to deliver that.

  2. International termination market is distinct from international origination market. The grey business affects the termination market, not the origination market.

    Pakistan’s outgoing rates are among the lowest in the region. Yet the grey market flourishes, because the govt is keeping termination rates too high.

    Lowering outgoing prices will not affect the grey market.

  3. I think when there is a substantial price desparity between international termination rates and local rates ( specially rates within the same operator) there is an oppertunity for grey market operators.

    It is very evident in Sri Lanka where the price of a On net call is Rs. 1 and the internatial termination rate of Rs. 5+, so the the relative local price what drives this business.

    In the countries where there is no desparity like this the grey market does not exists.