Cellular Operator Association of India (COAI), the lobby body for GSM service provider, Friday welcomed the decision of the Himachal Pradesh High Court debunking fears around mobile tower radiation, by dismissing multiple petitions filed in the Court against the setting up of mobile towers citing health hazards.
The two-judge bench said that there was no evidence to connect emissions from mobile towers to human health. “It is evident from the aforesaid reports that the exposure to electromagnetic fields (EMF) do not have any notable impact on the health of human beings.” the forty-page ruling stated.
Delivering the judgment, the Himachal Pradesh High Court referred to previous rulings by other High Courts, as well as findings by different committees that were constituted to look into the issue of radiation.
The judgment also mentioned that radiation in itself is nothing new and has been there since life began on earth three-and-a-half billion years ago. “Radiation is all around us and we are all actually submerged in naturally occurring ionizing radiation reaching us from the outer space, even from the radioactive elements and materials around us. Sunshine in itself is a familiar form of radiation,” the judgment said.
“Evidently, the studies conducted till date by the two premier organizations i.e. WHO and SCENIHR go to indicate that despite a large number of studies being carried out in the last two decades to assess the potential health risk on account of emission of EMF, no major adverse health effect has been noticed,” the ruling added.
COAI said that it has always stood by the safety standards adopted in India, which are ten times more stringent than international norms observed even by developed countries like the US and the UK.
“We welcome the judgment of the High Court. We believe that this landmark order will debunk several myths propagated by certain groups. The Court’s observations are an endorsement of all that COAI has been saying all along regarding misconceptions around mobile tower emissions,” Rajan S. Mathews, Director General, COAI, said in a statement.
“The Court’s observations should surely be looked at as a guiding principle by all State Governments in allowing operators to set up mobile towers to tackle the problem of call drops,” Mathews added.