The Cellular Operators Association of India (COAI) on Thursday announced the appointment of Ajai Puri, Chief Operating Officer (India and South Asia), Bharti Airtel as its Chairman for the year 2020-21.
The telecom industry body concluded its Annual General Body Meeting for the Financial Year 2019-20, with the announcement of its leadership for the term 2020-21.
Pramod Kumar Mittal, President, Reliance Jio Infocomm, will be the Vice Chairman of the Association, said a COAI statement.
Puri has been with Bharti Airtel since 2004, and has held several senior leadership positions including Director for Market Operations and Director and CEO, DTH, it said.
Mittal of Reliance Jio comes with a rich experience of 42 years in telecommunications.
Puri said: "It is a privilege for me to take on this role and I would like to thank all the members of COAI for considering me worthy of this responsibility. The digital communications industry has once again risen to serve India and has kept the nation connected during this unprecedented phase."
Mittal said: "It's a pleasure to take the responsibility as Vice Chairman of COAI and continue to work with the industry to bring about the next level of reforms in order to uplift and strengthen the sector while initiating measures for the benefit of end consumers.â€ť
COAI also announced the appointment of Lt. Gen. Dr. S P Kochhar as its Director General.
Lt. Gen. Dr. S P Kochhar, a decorated military veteran, retired as Signal Officer in Chief, the head of the ICT wing of the Indian Army, where he was responsible for planning, executing and operating all Telecom and IT networks of the Army. Prior to that, he was Additional Director General Personnel of the Indian Army, handling HR and Empowerment of the 11 lakh strong Army. He was till recently the CEO of Telecom Sector Skill Council of India.
He takes over from Rajan S Mathews, who served as the Director General since 2010. â€śThe members of COAI thank Mr. Rajan for his immense contribution to the telecom sector in India and the Association during his tenure, and wish him the very best for his future endeavours,â€ť the association said in a statement.
Rajan Mathews said that as the industry continues to play its critical role, the future has a lot in store for it with the ecosystem gearing up for 5G.