Mobile towers pose no health hazard, says IT ministry
ISLAMABAD, May 25: The current deployment of cellular antennas posed no risk to human health, people living in proximity to the towers even in densely populated urban centres.
This was stated in a press statement issued on Friday by the Ministry of Information Technology (MoIT) to dispel public concerns due to “erroneous” reporting, in certain sections of the media, of remarks made by the minister for information technology, Awais Ahmed Khan Leghari, during a recent news briefing.
The clarification explained that the ministry had taken appropriate policy measures to mitigate the negative perception of hazardous effects. These measures had been taken to ensure full compliance to international standards and aimed at providing the general public with further re-assurance about the safety of such infrastructure.
The policy issued by MoIT in this regard firmly established that no conclusive evidence of hazards to human health had been established for possible exposure levels vis-a-vis current arrangement of cellular towers.
The policy prescribed adoption of international standards for bringing antenna deployment criteria in line with best practices and to ensure safety of technical personnel working on the towers exactly in front of the antennas.
The press clarification further added that the general public could in no way be exposed to the level of radiation that was harmful for human health because such antennas were mounted on towers and rooftops more than 100 ft high. No human beings could ever come directly in front of the antenna mounted on top of the towers and the masts themselves posed no danger even if touched.
It was hoped that effective implementation of the policy would ensure public availability of radiation data of all cellular towers deployed in the country on PTA’s website (www.pta.gov.pk) to further reassure the public. PTA, being the regulator, already ensured that all such deployment of cellular towers was strictly done as per international safety standards.
However, it was important to note that installation of cellular BTS stations in populated areas of the cities was imperative for serving demand and for providing quality communications services to the people.