New Delhi: There are
no conclusive scientific studies anywhere to prove low radiation
emitted from cellular towers can cause cancer in human beings, and
authorities must gear up to tackle other environmental issues that
cause the lifestyle disease, experts said at a conference here.
"There is no conclusive scientific fact which can directly link
cellular tower radiation with cancer. There are various other
environmental risk factors also which could be responsible for
increasing cases of cancer and authorities should look into it,"
said Ajay Kumar, the sole Indian member on the World Medical
Council, a representative body of doctors across countries.
"Till the theory of the health hazards of cell phone radiation and
towers gets a reliable backup of scientific proof, it would be
highly unfair to censure the most wonderful technological advent
of the 20th century for health risks and diseases as serious as
cancer," Ajay Kumar, a former president of the Indian Medical
There has been a massive public outcry over the health hazards of
cellular tower radiation in all major cities. People across the
country have lot of confusion and misconception about radiation,
and they suspecting mobile towers for increasing cancer risk.
India has roughly 400,000 towers according to the Telecom
Regulatory Authority of India. Several organizations and citizens
groups across the country have been protesting over the years
against radiation from mobile towers, pointing out that these pose
a grave health hazard.
After a string of street protests stalled life over cellular
towers during the past few weeks in Jaipur, experts gathered here
Monday for a conference on "Cellular towers and radiation - What's
true & what is not".
Hemant Thacker, a consultant at Mumbai's Jaslok Hospital, who has
come across a case where more than two residents in the same
building developed cancer after the mobile tower was set up on the
building, said: "There is no study prima facie which directly
co-relates the two."
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), "considering the
very low exposure levels and research result collected to date,
there is no convincing scientific evidence that the week radio
frequency signals from base stations and wireless network cause
adverse health effects".
"There is no scientific study or proof till now, which can
conclusively say that cell tower radiation cause cancer. People
have more of misconception than understanding over the issue," D.P.
Singh, a senior radiation oncologist with Jaipur's SMS Hospital,
Subir Ganguly, head of radiotherapy at Kolkata's NRS Medical
College and Hospital, said: "It is very important to have
conclusive scientific proof on the issue. This calls for immediate
research to find out links, if any, between cellular tower
radiation and increasing incidences of cancer."
The Cellular Operation Association of India (COAI) conducted a
study last year on electromagnetic radiation from cell towers.
The study, conducted by IIT-Madras and Thiagarajar College,
Madurai, found that cell phone tower radiation at 96 locations in
Mumbai was within the permissible level of 4,500 mW/sq m.
In front of Nehru Science Centre it was 20 times lower, in Phoenix
Mills 144 times lower, in Bandra's Kala Nagar 17 times lower, in
Oberoi Mall 64 times lower and at JJ flyover 29 time lower.