The Department of Telecom (DoT) has tested 4,245 base tansceiver units (BTS)/ mobile towers of various telecom service providers (TSPs) between June 2020 and February 2021 and found 4,244 BTSs to be compliant with safety norms. “We have come across only one mobile tower slightly beyond the norms, which was also subsequently complied within the norms,” said Director Arvind Kumar on Tuesday.
The check was taken up following “growing public concern about possible health hazards from electro-magnetic field (EMF) exposures from mobile phones or their base stations”. Concerns have also been raised that continuous exposure to EMF radiation emanating from telecom towers causes harmful thermal and non-thermal health effects, he explained.
The department has taken strict measures for regulating EMF emission from a mobile tower within the safe exposure limits. “It is very important to note that our emission standards are 10 times more stringent than that of the existing limits prescribed by International Commission on Non Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP). Our telecom towers are also far better than the standards adopted by developed countries like the USA, Canada, Japan and Australia,” he asserted.
Radiation limits (specific absorption rate) prescribed for mobile handsets too are similar to that of developed countries, hence “the fact is mobile towers are safe in Telangana”, he claimed. ‘Tarang Sanchar’ – www.tarangsanchar.gov.in, a web portal has been launched for information sharing on mobile towers and EMF emission compliances with regard to safety and harmlessness from mobile towers and to clear myths and misconceptions.
The portal provides a public interface with easy map-based search feature for viewing mobile towers in vicinity of any locality and about the EMF compliance status. Detailed information can also be provided by mail on paying a nominal fee. DoT-Hyderabad is also conducting an online EMF awareness programme on March 3. For details, please contact Assistant Director Rajesh on 040-277546693 or e-mail: [email protected]