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BTRC claims country’s mobile tower radiation within safety limit

  • Published at 08:58 pm February 17th, 2020
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The telecom regulator made the claim following radiation tests on 70 mobile network sites last year at more than 10,000 sites in the country

The Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (BTRC) on Monday claimed that the level of radiation by mobile phone towers was not harmful for human health and the environment.

The telecom regulator made the claim following radiation tests on 70 mobile network sites last year at more than 10,000 sites in the country.

“The standard permissible amount of radiation exposure from mobile network tower is below the level of international standards and BTRC guidelines. So, there’s no reason to get scared,” Brig Gen Md Shahidul Alam, director general (SM) BTRC, assured the people citing a survey they conducted at a discussion meeting, held at a city hotel, on the tower radiation situation in the country, reports UNB.

Echoing the same, BTRC Deputy Director Shamsuzzoha, said: “From a statistical point of view, the sample size may seem very small but we will continue to do such tests. As we use the same technology in all the towers, we are confident the results will not vary much in other sites.” 

In his keynote paper, he said that radiation was generally of two types — Ionizing and non-Ionizing. 

Photo shows BTRC officials at a discussion meeting held at a hotel in Dhaka on Monday, February 17, 2020 | Mehedi Hasan/Dhaka Tribune

“Ionizing radiation is harmful for health but mobile phone tower radiation is non-Ionizing. Xray is an ionizing radiation but with proper use it can even be helpful. So non-Ionizing radiation from mobile towers, microwave or television is not harmful at all," he said.

According to the BTRC's report, radiation levels in the six districts last year were below the 2.10w/m2 (watts per square metre) mark, specified as a safety threshold by the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP).

BTRC Commissioner Aminul Hasan said the organisation had already conducted the mobile tower radiation survey and examined its effect in many places of the country, noting that such surveys would continue in future.

He said "rumours" about tower radiation were “completely baseless”, adding that the telecom regulator had already informed the government, private companies and building owners. “We’ve asked [the stakeholders] not to take fright,” he said.

Hasan said the High Court had asked them to submit a report on this issue, which they would do soon.

Buet Professor Dr Satya Prasad Majumder said the BTRC survey finding was 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 misperceptions on the issue.

Brig Gen SM Farhad (retd) Secretary General of the Association of Mobile Telecom Operators of Bangladesh, said, “We’ll need more sites when 5G is introduced. So, there’s no reason for halting technology just out of fear. This will cause us to fall behind.”