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Radiation from cell phones within limits, says Kapil Sibal

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Indian telecom minister says, government will conduct online checks on mobile towers to ensure there is no danger of radiation from it. Communication Minister Kapil Sibal said at an international conference by apex industry body Associated Chambers of Commerce Industry of India, government will ensure that electro-magnetic radiation from mobile phones and towers across the country is within the prescribed limits.

“Science and technology offer new hazards and solutions that throw up a constant conflict between two public interests,” said Sibal. “But human health is fundamental and should be placed two steps ahead of scientific solutions.”

The minister said, government had recently set up an inter-ministerial committee, which concluded emissions from base transceiver stations (BTSs) are one-hundredth of the prescribed limits and hence, safe for human beings. “We will soon be conducting online checks on BTS stations to ensure that there is no danger emitting from BTS towers,” said Sibal.

The government had notified the recommendations of the inter-ministerial group – which included representatives from Telecom Ministry, besides Departments Science and Technology, Biotechnology and Indian Council of Medical Research in November 2011. The new guidelines prescribes the Specific Energy Absorption Rate (SAR) level to 1.6 Watt exposure to a mass of 1 gram of human tissue over a six minute period, which means the device should emit maximum of 1.6 watt of energy in body of mobile user over duration of six minutes while a person is using the mobile phone.

It prescribes, emissions from telecom antenna mounted on mobile towers should be equivalent to frequency range in which the antenna operates.

Dr. Vijaylaxmi, professor at the department of radiation oncology at University of Texas Health Science Centre said, there is no scientific evidence worldwide to prove that electromagnetic radio frequency signals emitted by mobile phones and towers cause brain cancer or tumour.

India has about 900 million mobile users and five lakh mobile towers, following the explosive growth of telephony in the country.


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