Monday, September 27, 2010

No adverse impact on health from low level of electro-magnetic fields (EMF) propagated from towers: COAI and AUSPI

BANGALORE, INDIA: COAI (Cellular Operators Association of India) and AUSPI (Association of Unified Telecom Service Providers of India) held a workshop and briefing on “Radiation from Mobile Towers” - Myths Vs Realities.

The workshop aimed at “dispelling the myths” related to alleged health hazards from EMF radiations, by citing extensively from various study findings & research from the most independent organizations of the highest repute.

The workshop included participation from eminent doctors from varied specialist fields like Oncology, Cardiology, and Medicine, Senior official from Ministry of Communications & IT, and eminent scholars and academicians from IIT Madras and Thiagarajar College of Engineering.

Together, the eminent panelists briefed the audience on the various studies which have been conducted world wide, adoption of safety guidelines (ICNIRP) in India and most importantly myths related to alleged health hazards due to low level of electromagnetic waves from mobile towers.

S.C. Khanna, secretary general, AUSPI, in his opening address remarked: “Cellular mobile communications is around 10-15 years old in India. However, in the west, the same has been available for more than 20-30 years. It is pertinent to note that RF exposure of the public started many years ago when radio, television (broadcasting stations) came into being, however no long-term effects have been observed so far.”

Rajan S. Mathews, director general, COAI, while making the presentation on “Radiation from Mobile Towers” - Myths Vs Realities, said: “It is pertinent to dispel the myths surrounding the EMF emitted from mobile towers amongst the public and bring to the public the correct and accurate information based on the scientific evidence, studies and researches done over the past two to three decades by expert panels such as WHO, ICNIRP, FDA (USA).”

He further added that international agencies looking into the health and safety of mobile communications have refuted the misconceptions and have agreed that the scientific research do not demonstrate any health risks from the use of communication devices or towers.

He said: “Also, it is important to understand that the RF radiations emitted by mobile communication systems lie in the non-ionizing part of the electromagnetic spectrum and these radiations do not have enough energy to break the bonds that hold molecules in the cells together. Thus, the exposure to EMF radiations emitted from Mobile Systems cannot produce ionization or cause any genetic damage. And, the RF emissions from mobile phones and base stations are some hundreds times lower than the levels at which the first health effects begin to be established.”

A senior official from the Ministry of Communications & IT explained about the adoption of ICNIRP (International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection Board) standards for the telecom sector in India which will ensure abundant precaution and limit the exposure from the base stations and phones.

Prof. Dr. P.R. Goundan and Prof. Dr. S. Raju, added that during the extensive measurements carried out in Delhi the results indicated that even the cumulative emissions from mobile towers were hundred/thousand times lower than the laid out international standards.

The workshop was presided by eminent doctors which included, Dr Purvish Parikh, Medical Oncologist and MD, AmeriCares India, Dr. Siddharth, DM cardiology, UN Mehta Institute of Cardiology and Research Center, BJ Medical College, Ahmedabad and Dr. Manisha Makhija, pediatrician, Jupiter Hospital, Thane.

Also present were eminent people from the industry such as Balkrishan, director (Radio), Telecom Engineering Centre, Dr. PR Goundan, jt. director, CEWIT, IIT, Chennai, and Dr S. Raju, prof. and HOD ECE, Thiagarajar College of Engineering, Madurai.

TR Dua, dy. director general, COAI, while concluding the workshop, remarked, “This workshop would go a long way to highlight the right and truthful message and thus facilitate qualitative improvement in making our lives better/ simpler and thanked members of the media and all the luminaries to have come all the way to highlight the very important issue.”

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