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Mobile tower radiation level not harmful for health, environment: BTRC

FE REPORT | February 18, 2020 00:00:00

The level of radiation emitted by mobile phone towers is not harmful for human health risks and the environment.

Rumours about the level of radiation are obstructing the expansion and development of the telecom industry.

Radiation is inevitable in modern life. So many electronic and electric gadgets and equipments used in everyday life emit radiation and most of them are not harmful. It is better people become aware of this.

The experts and industry stakeholders said these at a meeting on 'Tower radiation measurement and recent survey' at Pan Pacific Sonargaon Dhaka Hotel in the capital on Monday.

The Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (BTRC) and Association of Mobile Telecom Operators of Bangladesh (AMTOB) jointly organised the discussion.

Speaking at the meeting, BTRC Commissioner Md Aminul Hasan said there have been surveys in all divisions conducted by the BTRC to measure and examine the level of radiation emitted by mobile phone towers and they did not find anything harmful for human health and the environment.

He said the standard permissible amount of radiation exposure from mobile network tower is below the level of international standards and BTRC guidelines.

He said there are a lot of 'rumours' about tower radiation which is completely baseless.

"We have already assured the government, private companies or building owners not to be afraid," he said.

"There is no reason to get scared," he said.

He said the High Court instructed BTRC to submit a report on this issue.

"And we will submit the report to the court soon," said BTRC commissioner.

Dr Shamsuzzoha, deputy director of BTRC's Engineering and Operations Division, presented the keynote paper at the discussion.

He said radiation is of two types -- ionising and non-ionising. Ionising radiation is harmful to health.

He said but mobile radiation is non-ionising which is very low and there is no risk.

"There are national and international specific standards regarding the electric and magnetic fields (EMF) radiation of appliances used in mobile towers, and we've found that radiation of mobile towers in the country is below the minimum prescribed limit," he noted.

"A sufficient number of well-planned towers will scatter the radiation of low energy which is much safer," he said, hoping that the people's confusion over this tower radiation will be removed.

BUET Professor Dr Satya Prasad Majumder said the BTRC survey finding is very satisfactory.

"Rumours regarding the tower need to be overcome. There's nothing to be afraid of," he said, urging the BTRC to continue the survey and take appropriate steps to eliminate public misperception.

He criticised videos which made "fictitious comments" about radiation.

"I urge them to refrain from making such statements. Rather, the radiation used in X-rays or other tests in diagnostic centres is harmful and they need to be more conscious."

AMTOB Secretary General and CEO Brig Gen SM Farhad (retd) said, "We'll need more sites when 5G will be introduced. So, there's no reason to halt technology just by being scared. This will cause us to fall behind."

He said rumours that exposure to radiation from mobile phones and mobile tower is harmful to human health is not true at all.

"We assure people that the radiation of the mobile tower does not do any harm. Mobile operators of Bangladesh use the same technology used in mobiles all over the world," he added.

Brig Gen Md Shahidul Alam, director general of Spectrum Division, BTRC and SM Nazmul Hasan, director of marketing at Huawei Technologies (Bangladesh), among others, also spoke at the discussion.

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