Sunday, February 28, 2010

Biological Effects of Cell Tower

Biological Effects of Cell Tower - continued

Biological Effects of Electromagnetic Radiation - Prof. Girish Kumar

Biological Effects of Electromagnetic Radiation

Prepared By:
Prof. Girish Kumar
Electrical Engineering Department
IIT Bombay, Mumbai, India
Email –,


I have been working in the area of antennas for nearly three decades. During this period, I have
written more than 150 papers in national and international journals and conferences and also
written a book entitled “Broadband Microstrip Antennas” published by Artech House, USA in
2003. I have probably designed, fabricated and tested more than 1000 antennas. In 2001, when I
was writing my book, I used to spend around 80 to 90 hours per week in the Antenna Lab at IIT
Bombay, I started having strange health problem that my fingers would swell and I would feel
hot even when AC was ON though my student’s would feel very cold. Initially, doctors gave me
medicine for skin treatment and later on, I was referred to Neurologist and after several weeks of
medicine, there was still no relief. Meanwhile, I also consulted Homeopathy doctor, who after
one month of doing experiment on me with his various medicines, told me that he has tried every
possible thing and he can not do anything to cure me. Just around that time, I measured the
radiation level in my office and lab, and found it to be very high. There were so many computers
around me and there was radiation from all the computers and laptops. Also, we were always
doing experiments with microwave circuits and antennas (occupational hazard). So, without
realizing, my body was absorbing electromagnetic radiation from all these sources. The solution
was simple: we re-arranged all the computers, partly isolated my office from the antenna lab, and
I partially recovered in about 3-4 months of time.

Around that time, mobile phones had started coming to India on a mass scale, and cell towers
started appearing on top of the residential buildings. I knew that sooner or later, people will start
having problems due to microwave radiation.

In 2008, we carried out radiation measurement in the academic area of IIT Bombay, where
several cell operators had installed transmitting towers, and found the radiation level to be very
high. Thereafter, followed series of emails to our learned faculty members at IIT Bombay, and to
my surprise, many of them did not know about harmful effects of microwave radiation on human
body. They had so many questions that I had to do lot of research, collected hundreds of papers,
saw several hundreds of websites, studied biological effects, and so on. Finally, I decided to ask
my daughter, Neha Kumar, who has done B.Tech. in Bio-Technology from Anna Univ., Chennai
to help me in preparing this report.

I sincerely hope that people will find this report useful and they will take immediate precaution
to safeguard themselves and their families from undesired microwave radiation.

- Prof. Girish Kumar


1 Fundamentals - Page 4
2 Evidence raises concerns about microwave exposure - Page 5
3 Scientific evidences on how cell phones affect health - Page 11
4 How do cell phones affect the environment? - Page 18
5 What is safe radiation? - Page 19
6 How safe is your cell phone? - Page 20
7 Some Interesting facts about cell phones - Page 20
8 Advice on use of microwave devices - Page 20
9 Conclusions - Page 23
10 References - Page 24

Page - 4

All the transmitting towers, such as AM and FM towers, TV towers, cell towers, etc. emit
RF/microwave radiation continuously. Also, Wi-Fi (wireless Internet), wireless computers,
cordless phones and their base units, cell phones and all other wireless devices emit microwave
radiation. A cell phone that is ON but not in use is also radiating.

Cell phones operate within the frequency band of 800 MHz, 900 MHz and 1800 MHz and the
latest 3G technology works between 1900 -2200 MHz. Computers and laptops operate within the
frequency range of 1000 – 3600MHz, and most Wi-Fi systems and some cordless phones operate
around 2450 MHz, which is same frequency as that of a microwave oven! The growing use of
wireless communication in the last decade has introduced concerns about health risks from the so
called man made electro smog. Various epidemiological and experimental studies have been
carried out and the results have shown to have a close relation between biological effects and
Electromagnetic radiation (Sage Cindy et al 2009).

Microwave radiation effect can be classified as - thermal and non-thermal. The thermal effect
has been largely studied and refers to the heat that is generated due to absorption of microwave
radiation. Being exposed to the thermal effect could cause fatigue, cataracts and reduced mental
concentration. Research is going on to study the non-thermal effects of radiation, and it has been
associated with affecting the cell membrane permeability. Sadly the current exposure safety
standards are purely based on the thermal effect while ignoring the non-thermal effects of

Principle of microwave heating is similar to that of a microwave oven where the water in the
food content is heated first. Likewise microwave absorption effect is much more significant by
the body parts which contain more fluid (water, blood, etc.) like the brain which consists of
about 90% water. Effect is more pronounced where the movement of the fluid is less, for
example, eyes, brain, joints, heart, abdomen, etc. The effect has shown to be much more severe
for children and pregnant women.

Of late there are lots of reports coming out on how radiation through mobile towers causes
cancer, though cell phone companies maintain that there is nothing conclusive on this subject.
The effectiveness or seriousness of the issue has not been realized among the common man yet
as one can not see or smell or hear microwave and its effect on health is noted after a long period
of time. Therefore, majority of the people tend to have casualness towards personal protection.
Unfortunately, ignorance and non-awareness adds to this misery and all of us are absorbing this
slow poison unknowingly.

The purpose of this report is to create awareness amongst people of the possible health hazards
which microwave radiation could lead, and the urgency to take necessary precautions to avoid
major public health consequences, or else the impact could be worse than Cancer, AIDS, World
War, Tsunami, etc.

Page - 5

2. Evidence Raises Concerns about Cell Phones and Microwave Exposure
There are Millions of websites on microwave radiation hazard, only a few are reported here:
• WHO study in 13 countries confirm increased risk for brain tumors
The Telegraph (16.10.2008):
Study by the International Agency for Research on Cancer, part of the World Health
Organization (WHO) discovered that the chances of developing a malignant tumor are
"significantly increased" for people who use cell phones for ten years. They also found
that a type of brain tumor called glioma is more likely in long-term mobile users.
• Alarming report - fivefold increased risk for brain tumors in children
The Independent (21.09.2008):
Research from Sweden reports that children and teenagers are five
times more likely to get brain cancer, if they use mobile phones.
This study, as experts say, raises fears that today's young people
may suffer an "epidemic" of the disease in later life.
• Germany warns citizens to avoid using Wi-Fi.
The Independent (9.09.2007):
The Environment ministry of the German government in September 2007 said that people
should avoid using Wi-Fi wherever possible because of the risks it may pose to health.
The official radiation protection body also advised its citizens to use landlines instead of
mobile phones, and warns of "electro smog" from a wide range of other everyday
• Base stations affect health negatively.
Among people living closer than 300 m away from the base station, a French study found
an increased incidence of tiredness within 300m, of headache, sleep disturbance,
discomfort, etc. within 200 m, and of irritability, depression, loss of memory, dizziness,
libido decrease, etc. within 100 m.
Women were found to complain significantly more often than men of headache, nausea,
loss of appetite, sleep disturbance, depression, discomfort and visual perturbations. This
study, based on the symptoms experienced by people living in vicinity of base stations
recommend that the minimal distance of people from cellular phone base stations should
not be <>

Page - 6

• New Austrian research confirms health effects of base station radiation.
Another study where tests were done on subjects living within 20-600 meters
from Mobile Phone Base stations were found to have sleeping problems and
effect on cognitive performance. (Hutter et al 2006)
• Building Top Floors under the Antenna Closed After Brain Tumor Alert
The Australian UK (5.13.2006)
After a seventh case of brain tumor observed among workers in the top floors of a
Melbourne office building, the top floors were closed down and 100 people were
evacuated. The mobile phone towers on the roof of the 17-storey RMIT University
building were thought to be linked to the recurrent cancer cluster.
• Three groups find danger of tumors
Sun Sentinel, Florida (1.2.2006)
Three European research groups in separate studies have found an increased risk of brain
tumors in people who have used the phones for 10 years or more. Two of the studies
found a correlation between the tumor's location and the side of the head where people
reported they held the phone (Hardell et al 2003).
One also suggests the greatest risk is in people who began using the phones before age of
20. Lennart Hardell found that the use of cell phones before age of 20 increased the risk
of brain tumors by 5.2, compared to 1.4 for all ages.
• Brain cancer risk increased at the side one holds the phone
A study by Jonas Hardell, professor of Oncology, Sweden suggests that the
risk for developing brain tumors increases significantly for the people who
use the phone more intensely and for more years. Also a significantly
increased risk of brain cancer was observed on the same side as one held
the phone, but not on the other side.
In addition, the risk was increased by 30% for developing Acoustic Neurinoma, a benign
tumor in the brain on a nerve related to hearing that may cause permanent deafness if not
removed in time. (Hardell L 2009)

Page - 7

• DNA is damaged by mobile phone radiation.
In 1995, Professor Henry Lai and N.P. Singh published a paper that documented DNA
damage in the brain cells of rats exposed to radiation similar to that emitted by cell
phones (Lai H et al 1995), but the study was ignored by the mobile phone industry stating
that his findings had not been confirmed.
The research was later corroborated by other studies. In
December 2004, results of work by 12 groups in seven European
countries, the "REFLEX Study", found that radiation at some
cell phone levels damages DNA and the damage could not
always be repaired by the injured cell (REFLEX, 2004). In a
BBC report, the leader of the four-year REFLEX study, Franz Adlkofer, said “people
should use landlines, rather than cell phones, wherever possible. We don’t want to create
a panic, but it is good to take precautions”.
According to Dr Lai “This does not mean it’s the beginning of the end of cell phones. If
the results are confirmed in further studies, we can engineer our way out of the problems,
just as we engineered the technology in the first place”.
A study from Israel further confirms DNA-damaging effects of mobile phone irradiation,
demonstrating the cause to be a non-thermal effect of electromagnetic radiation.
• Association of mobile phone radiation with human health in Saudi population
Omega-News (7.8.2004)
A Saudi Arabian study found a relationship between headache, fatigue, dizziness, tension
and sleep disturbances in subjects exposed to mobile phones emissions (Thamir Al-
Khlaiwi et al 2004). The use of mobile phones was considered to be is a risk factor for
health hazards suggesting avoidance of excessive use of mobile phones.
• Mobile phone radiation wrecks your sleep
The Independent (20.1.2008)
According to research by mobile phone makers own scientists, use
of the handsets before bed, delays and reduces sleep, and causes
headaches, confusion and depression.
The findings were especially alarming for children and teenagers, as it may lead to mood
and personality changes, ADHD-like symptoms, depression, lack of concentration and
poor academic performance.

Page - 8

• JJ Hospital Mumbai, says no to Mobile towers
Mumbai Mirror (24.2.2009)
JJ Hospital in Mumbai, India said no to installation of mobile towers
inside the premises. VVIPs in JJ Hospital had complained of poor
network inside main building, but experts said electromagnetic signals would adversely
affect medical equipment and powerful antenna tower inside the campus could be
hazardous too.
• Mobiles cut sperm count, says report
The Guardian (28.6.2004),
Hungarian scientists have found 30% sperm decrease in intensive mobile phone users, in
addition to damage of sperms. They found that not only did using the phone affect a
man's sperm count and the motility (speed of movement) of the sperm, but simply having
it switched ON in a pocket was enough to do damage as mobile phones periodically but
briefly transmit information to cell towers to establish contact.
• Physicist theory - mobile microwave interfere with the body and may cause harm
The Guardian UK (10.4.2004)
Communication within the human body occurs through a highly complex system of
electrical signals. According to this theory, exposure to pulsing microwave radiation from
microwaves and phones interferes with our bodies and disrupts the intercellular
communication in the same way that phones interfere with airplane or hospital
equipment. This may cause impairs in body function and could lead to illness.
• Effect of TV and FM Towers on health
A study in Australia found that children living near TV and FM broadcast
towers (similar to cell towers) had more than twice the rate of leukemia as
children living more than seven miles away from these towers (Hocking, B
et al 1996).
In another study, TV signal exposed workers were observed to have increased IgG and
IgA and decreased lymphocytes and T8 cells, resulting in a decrease in immune response
(Moszczynski, P et al 1999).

Page - 9

• French High Court verdict against Telecom Company
In February 2009, the telecom company Bouygues Telecom was ordered to take down a
mobile phone mast due to uncertainty about its effect on health. Residents had sued the
company claiming adverse health effects from the radiation emitted by the tall mobile
phone antenna (Versailles Court of Appeal, 4 February 2009).
• Don’t spend hours on mobile: Indian Health minister
Mumbai Mirror (23.7.2009)
Excessive use of mobile phones can lead to problems like deficient hearing and tinnitus
(ringing in the ears). Study done by Indian scientists indicates that sorineural deafness
(loss of hearing due to damage to sensors in inner ear) can occur in 25-30% of people
using mobile phones for more than two hours a day over a two-year period, besides
causing burning sensation in the ear and headaches. In addition, DNA damage, low
sperm count leading to infertility and reduction in testis size in rats has also been
reported. The health minister therefore advices for not using mobile phones for more
than one hour a day.
• German study: 3 times increased cancer risk
Several doctors living in Southern Germany city of Naila conducted a study to assess the
risk of mobile phone radiation. Their research examined whether population living close
to two transmitter antennas installed in 1993 and 1997 in Naila had increased risk of
Data was gathered from nearly 1,000 patients who had been residing at the same address
during the entire observation period of 10 years. The social differences are small, with no
ethnic diversity. There is no heavy industry, and in the inner area there are neither high
voltage cables nor electric trains. The average ages of the residents are similar in both the
inner and outer areas.
What they found is quite telling: the proportion of newly developed
cancer cases was three times higher among those who had lived
during the past ten years at a distance of up to 400m from the cellular
transmitter site, compared to those living further away. They also
revealed that the patients fell ill on average 8 years earlier.
Computer simulation and measurements used in the study both show that radiation in the
inner area (within 400m) is 100 times higher compared to the outer area, mainly due to
additional emissions coming from the secondary lobes of the transmitter.

Page - 10

Looking at only the first 5 years, there was no significant increased risk of getting cancer
in the inner area. However, for the period 1999 to 2004, the risk for getting cancer was
3.4 times greater in the inner area compared to the outer area. Breast cancer topped the
list, and the average age of contracting this disease was considerably lower, 50.8 years
compared to 69.9 years in the outer area, but cancers of the prostate, pancreas, bowel,
skin melanoma, lung and blood cancer were all increased
• Mumbai facing Radiation
Cell Tower Radiation: (05.8.2008)
A recent study revealed that the electromagnetic radiations emitted from phone towers in
Mumbai were way beyond safety levels. According to the study, the safe limit of
radiations for human beings is up to 50 μW/m2microwatts per square meter and the upper
limit is 100 microwatts per square meter. The study revealed that the radiation readings in
several residential areas were more than 1000 microwatts per square meters.
Mumbai has witnessed a spurt in the number of phone towers in
the recent past exposing people to dangerously high levels of
radiations. Being exposed to such radiation, this leads to
problems like loss of appetite, irritation, fatigue, difficulty in
concentrating, headaches, problems in vision, infertility and
deformity of foetus. Medical experts feel it is a ‘slow and
invisible killer’.
“If you are using a headset or hands free close to your ear while talking or put it in the
pockets, the radiation is directly affecting this tissue and because it is heating up, even
though very minimally, the cellular tissue is being heated,” said Dr Pratima Rajan,
Department of Cardiac Rehabilitation and Preventive Cardiology, Jaslok Hospital.
So while technology invasion has happened at a rapid pace in India, stringent laws are
still to be in place against the risks that they come with.

Page - 11

3. Scientific evidences on how cell phones affect health
There are several scientific reports, which clearly mention how cell phones affect health. Some
of these are described below:
• The Blood Brain Barrier
The brain is protected by tight junctions between adjacent cells of capillary walls by the
blood-brain barrier, which selectively lets nutrients pass through from the blood to the
brain, but keeps toxic substances out. Since 1988, researchers in the laboratory of a
Swedish neurosurgeon, Leif Salford, have been running variations on this simple
experiment: they exposed young laboratory rats to either a cell phone or other source of
microwave radiation, and looked for albumin in their brain tissue. Albumin is a protein
that is a normal component of blood but that does not normally cross the blood-brain
barrier. The presence of albumin in brain tissue is a sign that blood vessels have been
damaged and that the brain has lost some of its protection.

Comparison of brains from unexposed and exposed rats

(We are not able to upload the relevant image at this location, it can be viewd in the PDF version of this report)

Experiments conducted found that the exposed animals were much more likely to have
albumin leaking from blood vessels in inappropriate locations, shown as dark dots in the
exposed brain above on the right. Control animals, in contrast, showed either no albumin
leakage or occasional isolated spots, as seen in the figure on the left.
A closer look at the cells within the brain also revealed that exposed animals had
scattered and grouped dark neurons often shrunken with loss of internal cell structures.
Neuronal damage of this kind may not have immediate consequences but in the long run,
it may result in reduced brain reserve capacity that might be unveiled by other later
neuronal diseases.
These experiments have been repeated and the same results were obtained, consistently
for 18 years, confirming microwave radiation, at doses equal to a cell phone’s emissions,
causes albumin to be found in brain tissue. It must be noted that the blood-brain barrier is
the same in a rat and a human being.
In another research, a single two-hour exposure to a cell phone, just once during its
lifetime, permanently damaged the blood-brain barrier and, on autopsy 50 days later, was
found to have damaged or destroyed up to 2 percent of an animal’s brain cells, including

Page - 12

cells in areas of the brain concerned with learning, memory and movement (Salford et al,
2003). It is known that this barrier is damaged in Parkinsons disease and in Alzheimers
dementia. So there is a risk that disruption of this protection barrier may damage the
In fact similar mechanisms protect the eye (the blood-vitreous barrier) and the fetus (the
placental barrier), and the work of Allen Frey and others indicates that microwave
radiation damages these barriers also (Allan et al 1988). The implication: No pregnant
woman should ever be using a cell phone and if at all they have to use in emergency, it
should be for minimal duration.
• Radio-Wave Sickness
Unfortunately, cell phone users are not the only ones, whose brains and
ears are getting affected. Organs such as the lungs, nervous system,
heart, eyes, testes and thyroid gland have been shown to be especially
susceptible to radio waves.
Diseases such as asthma, sleep disorders, anxiety disorders, attention
deficit disorder, autism, multiple sclerosis, ALS, Alzheimer’s disease, epilepsy,
fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, cataracts, hypothyroidism, diabetes, malignant
melanoma, testicular cancer, heart attacks and strokes in young people have increased
remarkably in the last couple of decades, and have shown to be connected with the
massive increase in radiation in our environment. Radiation changes sleep rhythm,
affect’s body's cancer-fighting capacity by harming immune system, and changes nature
of electrical and chemical signals communicating between cells. These changes lead to
functional changes in the nervous system. It also causes red blood cells to leak
hemoglobin, leading to heart disease and kidney stones.
• Calcium ion release from cell membranes
Studies by Carl Blackman (Blackman et al. 1982) have shown
that weak electromagnetic fields remove calcium ions bound
to the membranes of living cells, making them more likely to
tear, develop temporary pores and leak.
Leakage of calcium ions into the cytosol (the fluid found inside cells) acts as a metabolic
stimulant, which accelerates growth and healing, but it also promotes the growth of
tumors. Leakage of calcium ions into brain cells generates spurious action potentials
(nerve impulses) accounting for pain and other neurological symptoms in electrosensitive
individuals. It also degrades the signal to noise ratio of the brain making it less
likely to respond adequately to weak stimuli. This may be partially responsible for the
increased accident rate of drivers using mobile phones.
• DNA damage
Microwave exposure at levels below the current FCC exposure standard, produces single
and double strand breaks in DNA (Lai et al).

Page - 13

As mentioned above, EMR causes membrane leakage due to loss of calcium ions. Leaks
in the membranes of lysosomes (small bodies in living cells packed with digestive
enzymes) release DNAase (an enzyme that destroys DNA), which explains the
fragmentation of DNA seen in cells exposed to mobile phone signals.
Another possibility of DNA damage is via free radical formation inside cells. Free
radicals kill cells by damaging macromolecules, such as DNA, protein and membrane.
Several reports have indicated that electromagnetic fields (EMF) enhance free radical
activity in cells (e.g., Lai and Singh 1997a, b; Simko et al 2007), via the Fenton reaction
(Lai and Singh 2004), as shown in the figure below. The Fenton reaction is a catalytic
process of iron to convert hydrogen peroxides, a product of oxidative respiration in the
mitochondria, into hydroxyl free radical, which is a very potent and toxic free radical.
Thus EMF affects the DNA via an indirect secondary process.
Damage to DNA is a central mechanism for developing tumors and cancer. When the rate
of damage to DNA exceeds the rate at which DNA can be repaired, there is the
possibility of retaining mutations and initiating cancer
• Irreversible infertility
Magras and Xenos (1997) have reported that mice on exposure to cell phone signals from
an antenna park become less reproductive. After five generations of exposure, the mice
were not able to produce offspring, showing that the effect of Radio frequency radiation
can pass from one generation to another.
Use of cell phones by men is associated with decrease in semen quality, sperm count,
motility, viability and normal morphology and is related to the duration of cell phone use.
Studies have found that using a mobile phone for more than four hours a day is associated
with reduction in sperm viability and mobility of around 25 percent (Agarwal et al 2006).

Page - 14

• Risk to Children
In May 2000, a report by the Independent Expert Group on
Mobile Phones (IEGMP) in the U.K., known as The Stewart
Report, was the first to draw greater attention to the possibly
higher sensitivity of children to RF radiation from cell phones.
Their smaller head and brain size, thinner cranial bones and skin,
thinner, more elastic ears, lower blood cell volume, as well as
greater conductivity of nerve cells, were found to contribute to
greater absorption of RF in the child’s head compared to the adult’s head.
In a study (Foliart et al 2006), children recovering in high-ELF environments had poorer
survival rates (a 450% increased risk of dying if the ELF fields were 3 mG and above).
Another attention- grabbing study reported that children who are raised in a home within
300 meters of a high-voltage electric power line have a five-fold increased risk of
developing some kinds of cancers sometime in later life (Lowenthal 2007).
(We are not able to upload the relevant image at this location, it can be viewd in the PDF version of this report)

Radiation Penetration in the head of an adult, ten-year and five-year old
When radiation hits the head, it penetrates the skull. The pictures above are the result of
an experiment done by Dr Om Ghandhi back in 1997. He showed how radiation
penetrates the skull of an adult (25%), 10 year old (50%) and a 5 year old (75%). The
younger the child the deeper the penetration due to the fact their skulls are thinner and
still developing.
Study by Dr. Om Gandhi explains why, children are in much bigger danger of getting a
brain tumor from EMR ; Brain tumors have now taken over leukemia as the biggest cause
of death amongst children.
• Risk to Pregnant Women
A pregnant woman and the fetus both are vulnerable because of the fact that
these RF radiations continuously react with the developing embryo,
increasing cells, because of thermal heat also. Allan Frey and others
described in their work that microwave radiation damages the placental
barrier; the membrane which prevents the passage of some materials between

Page - 15

the maternal and fetal blood, protecting the foetus, implying that no pregnant woman
should ever be using a cell phone.
In a recent finding, an association was found between a mother’s cell phone use during
pregnancy and greater likelihood for behavioural problems in their children at age 7
(Divan et al., 2008). It is believed that the eggs, which form the embryo, are affected and
the damage will become apparent after the child reaches puberty.
• Risk to Patients Carrying Pace Makers
The RF Exposure can adversely affect the heart: Pace Maker, Implantable
Cardiovascular Defibrillators (ICDs) and Impulse Generators and become
arrhythmical (Altamura G et al 1997). These radiations may stop Pace
Maker from delivering pulses in a regular way or may generate some kind of
external controlling pulse putting the patient to death.
• Occupational Hazard
Studies of people who are exposed in their work (occupational exposure), have shown to
have elevated levels of health risks. Those employed in electrical occupations are 10% to
20% more likely to get brain cancer (Kheifets et al 1995) and show elevations in non-
Hodgkin’s lymphoma (Villeneuve et al 2000). Another study reveals that workers who
are in the highest 10% category for EMF exposure are twice as likely to die of prostate
cancer as those exposed at lower levels (Charles et al. 2003).
A 1998 survey by the California Department of Health Services indicated that at that time
120,000 Californians - and by implication 1 million Americans - were unable to work due
to electromagnetic pollution. These so-called electrically sensitive individuals are
increasing in almost every country in the world, marginalized, stigmatized and ignored.
As said by Dr. Olle Johansson “These people are acting as a warning for all of us. It
could be a major mistake to subject the entire world’s population to whole-body
irradiation, 24 hours a day.”
• Auditory perception of microwaves
“Ringxiety”- the psychological disease of hearing phantom sound and sensation of cell
phone ring has appeared in Japan (also reported in India) among cell phone users (James
C et al 2002).
This auditory perception has been shown to occur when a person’s head is illuminated
with microwave energy (Foster et al 1974). The microwave pulse, upon absorption in the
head, launches a thermo-elastic wave of acoustic pressure that travels by bone conduction
to the inner ear. There it activates the cochlear receptors via the same process involved
for normal hearing, which explains the “clicks” heard by people exposed to microwave

Page - 16

• Salivary gland tumor
An epidemiology study in Tel Aviv University by Dr. Sadetzki, a
physician, found that those who held a mobile handset against one
side of their head for several hours a day had 50% more risk for
tumor formation in the parotid gland -The largest salivary gland
(Sadetzki et al 2008).
• Melatonin Reduction
Melatonin is a powerful antioxidant, antidepressant and immune system enhancer that
regulates our circadian rhythm. When availability of melatonin is impaired, a whole
range of disorders including sleep disturbances and psychological imbalances such as
depression can occur (Abelin et al 1999).
Various studies show that exposure to EMR reduce melatonin levels in people (Wilson et
al. 1990, Wood et al 1998). Melatonin protects the brain against damage leading to
Alzheimer’s disease; hence degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s
disease as well as cancer have been linked to suppressed melatonin production in the
• Neurodegenerative Diseases
Exposure to electromagnetic fields has shown to be in connection with Alzheimer’s
disease, motor neuron disease and Parkinson’s disease (WHO ELF Health Criteria
Monograph 2007). All these diseases are involved with the death of specific neurons and
are classified as neurodegenerative diseases. An increased risk, about four times for
Alzheimer’s disease (Hakansson et al 2003) and three times for amyotrophic lateral
sclerosis (ALS) (Savitz et al1998) has been reported for those exposed to ELF, compared
to the control group.
Besides, inhabitants living near mobile phone base stations are also at
risk for developing neuropsychiatric problems as headache, memory
loss, nausea, dizziness, tremors, muscle spasms, numbness, tingling,
altered reflexes, muscle and joint paint, leg/foot pain, depression, and
sleep disturbance. (Abdel-Rassoul 2006, R. Santini et al 2003). More
severe reactions include seizures, paralysis, psychosis and stroke.
• Effects on Stress Proteins (Heat Shock Proteins)
Heat shock proteins (HSPs), also called stress proteins, are a group of proteins that are
found in virtually all living organisms. Expression of these proteins is increased when a
cell undergoes various types of environmental stresses like heat, cold, heavy metal
poisoning and oxygen deprivation.

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It has been observed that very low-level ELF and RF exposures can cause the cells to
produce stress proteins (heat shock proteins) (Leszczynski et al 2002), which means that
the cells recognizes ELF and RF exposures as harmful. Hence ELF and RF exposures
add to the list of environmental stressors that cause a physiological stress response. This
further demonstrates that ELF and RF exposures can be harmful, and it happens at levels
far below the existing public safety standards.
An additional concern is that if the stress goes on too long, there is a reduced response,
and the cells are less protected against the damage. This is why prolonged or chronic
exposures may be quite harmful, even at very low intensities.
• Sleep Disorders
Electromagnetic fields have been shown to affect the brain physiology. Use of mobile
phones disturbs Stage 4 sleep, the stage important for full recuperation of brain and body
(Regel S.J et al 2007).
Number of mobile phone calls, SMS messages per day and high combined
use of computer have been associated with sleep disturbances. Use of
SMS service has also been linked with symptoms of depression (Thomee et al 2007).
• Interference with other gadgets
Cell phone radiation interferes with navigational equipments; therefore its use is banned
in airborne flights, and also in hospitals near ICUs using life-line Electronic gadgets.
• Serious health concerns regarding current Safety Thresholds
In most countries the mobile radiation safety standards are based on the assumption that
the only biological effect of microwave (mobile phone) radiation is heating, the so called
thermal effect. However ample evidence demonstrates that non-thermal effects do exist
and may occur at a significantly lower radiation level than what causes heating.
Papers by Dr. Henry C Lai report that non-thermal effects of Radio frequency radiation
(RFR) accumulate over time; Phillips et al. (1998) reported DNA damage in cells after 24
hours of exposure to low intensity RFR; increased risk for glioma and acoustic neuroma
(tumor of the nerve connecting ear to brain) after 10 years of mobile phone use with the
current exposure standards (Hardell et al 2009). All point to the fact that the current
exposure standards for microwaves are not safe for long-term exposure.
The Bioinitiative Report (610 pages long) has been prepared by a group of independent
scientists after thorough and very careful survey of the literature and they concluded that
the existing standards for public safety are inadequate to protect public health and needs

Page - 18

to be revised. The Bioinitiative report can be viewed at:
4. How Do Cell Phones Effect the Environment?
There are significant environmental effects of cell tower radiations. Some of these are:
• Effect on Birds
Research shows that when birds are exposed to weak
electromagnetic fields, they disorient and begin to fly in all
directions, which explains migratory birds undermining
navigational abilities.
• Effect on farm animals
Some farmers have observed that cows grazing near cell towers are more likely to
experience still births, spontaneous abortions, birth deformities and behavioral problems,
and general declines in overall health. Moving cattle herds away from such towers has
reportedly led to immediate health improvements.
According to Dr. W. Löscher of the Institute of Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmacy
of the Veterinary School of Hannover in Germany, dairy cows that were kept in close
proximity to a TV and cell phone tower for two years had a reduction in milk production
along with increased health problems and behavioral abnormalities. In an experiment,
one cow with abnormal behavior was taken away from the antenna and the behavior
subsided within five days. When the cow was brought back near the antenna, the
symptoms returned.
• Mobile Phones and Vanishing Bees.
A study in England showed that bees refused to return to their
beehives where there was a DECT cordless phone station. The
DECT-station is a simple cordless phone base, widely used in homes
and offices. It continuously emits the same radiation as mobile
phones. It is discussed that the extensive use of mobile phones may
be one reason why bee colonies are vanishing at a huge scale in Europé and the US.
Bees are vital pollinators for agriculture. With the vanishing of bees, a major food crisis
could ensue.
Another study conducted by Punjab University, India found that electromagnetic
radiations from cell phone towers can lead to diseases in plants and animals, and is the
reason for the vanishing butterflies, some insects and birds like sparrows

Page - 19

5. What is safe radiation?
Rate at which radiation is absorbed by the human body is measured by specific
absorption rate (SAR), measured in units of watts per kg (W/kg) of tissue. If the
heat generated is small, the body’s thermoregulatory mechanism can dissipate it
without causing adverse effects. If the temperature exceeds this capacity, about 1
to 2 degree Celsius, tissue damage may occur.
Every mobile phone comes with a SAR rating (although some manufacturers try to hide it).
Regulating agencies has set its maximum levels for handsets. Radiations depend on its design,
antenna, how it is held and used. Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE)
Committee on Man and Radiation, national and international organizations have established
safety guidelines for exposure to RF energy.
Testing has shown a wide range in radiation exposure to the user of various brands and models
of cellular phones. The SAR values of a few cell-phone models are tabulated below:
Increase in thermal effects occurs when whole-body energy absorption exceeds a SAR of 4
W/kg. Taking this value as threshold for harmful effects, the International Commission on Non-
Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP) applies a safety factor of 50 to derive safe limits for
exposure to general public. However, studies, as mentioned above in previous sections, have
shown that exposing humans to cell phone radiation can change brainwave activity, affect
memory and learning at SAR levels as low as 0.1 watt per kilogram (W/Kg) in comparison to the
US allowable level of 1.6 W/Kg and the ICNIRP allowable level of 2.0 W/Kg. SAR value for
various mobile phones can be viewed at:
tag=rb_content%3brb_mtx or
Manufacturer Model SAR Output (W/Kg)
Motorola V195s 1.6
Nokia E710x 1.53
LG Rumor 2 1.51
Sony Ericsson W350a 1.48
Samsung Instinct 1.46
Samsung Soul 0.24
Nokia 9300 0.21
Output is expressed in Watts per Kilogram
Current UK Standard = 1.0W/Kg
Current US Standard = 1.6W/Kg

Page - 20

6. How safe is your Cell phone?
Many cellular phones have microwave output signal strength of 1 to 2 Watts. The SAR limit of
1.6W/Kg is only for 6 minutes usage per day. A fact, most of the mobile operators do not tell the
users. It has been reported that approximately 20 minutes of continuous talking on mobile
phones raises ear lobe temperature by roughly 1.50C. A 1.50C rise in temperature is equivalent to
2.70F, implying normal body temperature increasing from 98.40F to fever of 101.1 0F. Only then,
brain realizes that ear temperature has gone up and body thermal regulatory mechanism starts
7. Some Interesting Facts About Cellphones
Did You Know?
• Nearly 30% to 50% of the radiation emitted by a typical cell phone, (enough to cause
heating), is absorbed by the user’s head?
• That a cell phone operating with good reception and at low power, produces a near-field
plume (an area of intense radiation which forms around the center of the transmitting
antenna of your cell phone) radius of 6-7 inches, which results in radiation penetrating 3
inches into your head.
• That talking on cellular phone for more than 20 minutes raises ear lobe and brain
temperature by up to 2 degrees.
• Thermal measurements taken at cell phone base stations have ranged as high as 900
W/KG, whereas the permissible SAR level for cell phone base station antennas is
• Cell phones connect with the base station as frequently as every minute so as to relay
information about your location, which generates a near-field plume by your phone even
when you are not making a call.
8. Advice on use of microwave devices
A. Minimize time and intensity
• Minimize the time you speak. Preferably use the mobile phone only for very short
duration, of a few minutes length, and never for several minutes. Mobile phones were
invented for emergency use but unfortunately they have now become part of our daily
• Minimize the intensity of the irradiation.
Always check the signal intensity and don't call when the signal is
weak, because then your mobile will irradiate maximally.
Hold the phone as far away as possible from the body while calling.
For this reason:

Page - 21

• Use safe headsets. The kind having a plastic tube between the earpiece and the
phone are best. Search on Google for tube + headset (or airtube) and you will find
several alternatives.
• Use a loudspeaker phone, as your headset may not always be available. But be
careful, your face should be as far away as possible from the phone to reduce
absorption of radiation by the face.
B. Avoid other sources of microwave radiation
• Keep out of Wi-Fi fields. If you have Wi-Fi based internet at home,
get rid of it and use cable connection or switch it off when not in
use. Some studies indicate that the Wi-Fi irradiation is stronger than
the producers maintain. Don't stay long in Wi-Fi cafés as its
radiation is continuous.
• Avoid using cordless phones in your home. Their base station, the charger/antenna,
emits strong and continuous microwave radiation throughout the whole house. Use
ordinary landlines only.
• Keep out of Mobile phone towers / base stations. Studies indicate an increased rate of
diseases, including cancers, within about 400 m from them.
Until now, man has been absorbing the harmful, unseen electromagnetic
radiations without even being aware of it, but now, with the rapid advent
in technology, this RF Radiation pollution has started having ill effects
on human health, health of animals, functioning of normal household,
medical investigatory equipments and even on food products being
consumed by everybody. Hence, there is an urgent need to take
precautionary steps. Example, when a glass is filled with water, it holds
up to a certain level, but once it reaches the rim, it starts spilling.
Similarly, our bodies can also absorb radiation up to a certain limit.
It is a well known fact that automobiles create pollution, but have we stopped driving/using
automobiles? Instead, people came up with solution of unleaded petrol, CNG driven vehicle,
catalytic converters, hybrid vehicles, etc. Not all people get clean drinking water at their homes,
hence Aqua Guard, Zero B and other water purifiers were invented.
We recommend mobile companies to accept the fact that radiation causes serious health problem,
only then people all over the world, will carry out research to come out with solutions.

Page - 22

Videos to Watch
• Cell Phone Use and Tumors: What the Science Says
A committee was held on September 25, 2008 to discuss the exponential growth of cell
phone and its link to health problems like tumors. Scientists, Doctors, and a member from
the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) presented various aspects of their study.
The video of approx. 2 hours of this Congressional Hearing can be viewed at:
• Invisible Dangers of Cell Phone Radiation
This video of approximately 10 minutes shows the dangers and possible hazards from
electromagnetic radiation, and the necessity to take immediate precautions

Page - 23


There are a large number of contradictory reports which confuse the common man. But there are
certain facts which cannot be argued with.
• Besides thermal effects on the human body, non-thermal effects of Electromagnetic
Radiation have been observed and are associated with brain tumors, acoustic neuroma,
lymphomas, decrease in immune function, sleep disorders, anxiety disorders, autism,
multiple sclerosis, ALS, Alzheimer’s disease, cataracts, hypothyroidism, diabetes,
malignant melanoma , testicular cancer, heart attacks and strokes in young people.
• Children are more vulnerable to radio frequency radiation emissions as their skulls are
thinner, their nervous system still developing and myelin sheath is yet not developed, and
tests have shown that they absorb more radiation than adults.
• According to safety rules in the US, no residential complex should exist at a radius of 50
meters from the cell phone towers, as serious health concerns have been linked with
public health and the base stations. A report has been prepared by the WHO- World
Health Organization on Electromagnetic fields and public health: mobile telephones and
their base stations in 2000, and is available at:
• In countries like Sweden, Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, Switzerland, Austria,
Greece, and Israel, where wireless technologies are fairly mature and widely distributed,
these complaints are widespread and the cause of significant public concern. For
example, the advent of the new 3rd Generation wireless phones (and related communitywide
antenna RF emissions) caused almost immediate public complaints of illness in the
Netherlands (TNO Physics and Electronics Laboratory, The Netherlands. 2003).
• The fact that the use of mobile phones etc. is prohibited in hospitals further affirms the
fact that mobile phones are not completely safe.

Page - 24

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If any one wants this reports in PDF format, please leave your email address in the comments option

Information from various state authorities

As per Hon’ble High Court orders in W.P. No. 23228 of 2007, Dated 31-12-2007.

In Andra Pradesh, TEC (Tower Erection Compnay)
1. shall obtain necessary approval of the Air Traffic Controller, Airport Authority of India.
2. shall take special precaution for fire safety and lightening etc
3. shall furnish a legally valid undertaking that they are solely responsible for any damage to the building and for public safety.
4. shall furnish NOC from the surrounding building owners, and also from the concerned building owner in case of rooftop installations.

All the Commissioners of Municipal Corporations and Municipalities and Vice Chairmen of Urban Development Authorities in the State are further directed to inspect all such land based and rooftop installations with in their jurisdiction and in case any such structure is found endangering the building or the lives of the residents, action shall be taken, in accordance with law to remove such structures.

Order issued vide Endst. No.26/6/22-UTFI(3)-2004/388-390, DT. 14.1.2005 BY Chief Administrator, Chandigarh.

In exercise of powers conferred under Section 4 of the Capital of Punjab(Development and Regulation)Act, 1952 the Chief Administrator, Chandigarh hereby allow relaxation of Building height prescribed in the Punjab Capital(Development and Regulation)Building Rules, 1952 for the installation of Mobile Telephony Towers and other related technology in non residential Buildings in Chandigarh on payment of one time non refundable permission fee of Rs.1.00 lac(Rupees one lac) per site and in case the site is shared by other cellular operators and additional amount of Rs.50,000/-(Rupees fifty thousand only), per sharing can be charged, with immediate effect subject to other usual terms and conditions.

The installation of towers shall be subject to following terms and conditions:-
1. Mobile or wire-less telephone towers shall only be allowed on non-residential buildings of the Chandigarh Administration.
2. The towers shall be shared by at least three mobile companies and the Cellular Operator (hereinafter called operator) shall put up mono-pole towers on/in of the institutional premises. All the three operators shall obtain separate permission from the Administration after obtaining the consent of the company which has erected the tower on such terms and conditions which the Administration may decide on case to case basis.
3. Total height of the pole from ground zero shall not exceed 30 mtrs. If it is coming on the roof top of the building, the height of the building shall be reduced by permissible 30mtrs.
4. The size of generator room shall be 11.49 mtrs * 7.06 mtrs. Including the area of pole and shelter room and its components. The generator shall be noiseless and shall confirm to all norms fixed by environmental laws and guidelines.
5. The final permission for installation towers shall be granted by the Single Window Committee headed by the Finance Secretary and consisting of Estate Officer, Chief Engineer, Chief Architect, Chief Fire Officer/MC and head of the office of the concerned building.
6. Any operator, duly approved to carry out its operations by the Govt. Of India , shall apply to Chief Architect, UT Chandigarh with all required relevant documents and undertakings. The Chief Architect shall circulate the request to all concerned members of the Single Window Committee for their report within 10 days failing which it shall be presumed that they have no comments to offer and the matter will be placed before the Finance Secretary by Chief Architect for placing it before Single Window Committee.
7. The Single Window Committee shall be competent to lay down various guidelines as deemed appropriate from time to time.
8. After approval of the Single Window Committee, the application will be sent to the Plan Approval Committee for issuance of formal orders and consequent to that the Assistant Estate Officer, UT Chandigarh (herein after called the Lessor) will sign the rent deed on behalf of the Chandigarh Administration for a period of 5 years and can be subsequently extended in future for 3 years each on such terms and conditions which shall be decided by the Administration at the time of every renewal.
9. The site shall be used only for setting up the towers and generator room. No commercial activity at site shall be permitted.
10. The rent/lease money to be paid by the person/company which will get the permission to erect the pole if the person/company, who has put the tower fails to pay the lease money to the Administration within 15 days from the expiry of the due date , the Administration shall be free to disconnect the essential services to the tower and remove the pole without giving any prior notice. The rent will be prescribed on case to case basis by the Finance Department because there cannot be a fixed rent as the area and location will keep on varying. The rent shall increase by 5% every year.
11. Apart from the person who gets the permission to erect the pole all other operators who will use the pole shall also have to take separate permission from the Administration after obtaining the consent of the company, which has erected the tower on such terms and conditions which the Administration may decide on case to case basis.
12. Whatever taxes, levies etc. Which are levies etc. Which are liveable by any Govt. Or by any statutory authority, shall be payable by the operator.
13. The operator allowed the use of space for the tower shall abide by all building bye-laws and such other laws governing use of space and erection of tower
as applicable from time to time in Chandigarh. In addition the Chief Administrator, Chandigarh shall be competent to issue any such directions as deemed fit which the operator shall abide. The operator shall have comprehensive insurance policy at its own cost for all such structure which they will be putting and raising and by any circumstances if any damage is caused to any person or property because of the tower, machine room, generator room etc. Erected by the operator. The operator shall be solely responsible for paying all kinds of compensation and damages and shall be solely responsible for civil or criminal case arising there from.

The Mobile Towers are allowed in all the zones except public utility. However, cellular Operators are advised to avoid residential area. Every cellular Operator has to submit structural stability certificate from reputed institute, regarding steel structure and foundation. Maximum height of the tower from the ground level is not allowed above 60-metre and the applicant needs to submit clearance from Statutory Advisory Committee for Frequency Allocation (SACFA), Ministry of Communication and Information Technology, Government of India. The companies need to submit indemnity bond indemnifying DTCP against any loss of life/property in the event of mishap. The permission for setting up of communication tower is co-terminus with the period of lease agreement.
MCD against cell phone towers in residential areas
In foreign countries, no such mobile towers are visible as they are using the latest technology
Published on 02/10/2010 - 10:49:18 AM
New Delhi: The Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) Tuesday cleared a new policy for erecting cell phone towers in the city, and said no towers would be allowed in residential areas unless there is no alternative.
It also gave a month's time to service operators who have erected cell phone towers without permission to apply for regularisation.
An MCD sub-committee on framing the policy on erection of cell phone towers submitted its report Tuesday. The recommendations were accepted at a meeting of the MCD's apex standing committee.
According to the MCD, the national capital has around 2,500 illegal towers that give access to various telecommunication service providers. Around 900 have been served notices while for the rest the MCD's permission is awaited.
The sub-committee recommended that least priority should be given to cell phone towers on residential buildings and in group housing societies.
"In case of residential buildings, it shall be certified that no other alternative is available with the service provider. In case of a group housing residential building, an NOC (no objection cerificate) from all the occupants of the housing block along with the NOC of the society would be required," the recommendations said.
For getting a no-objection certificate (NOC) for a cell tower, the telecom providers will require "a recommendation letter by COAI (Cellular Operators Association of India) to the fact that the proposed tower is essentially required at the site as the nearest tower of this company is existing at a distance and no sharing of tower with other company is available".
The service provider will also have to submit that the proposed tower is not harmful to the health of nearby residents.
The sub-committee recommended that towers "shall only be permitted on regularized buildings and the service provider company shall provide third-party insurance".
A fee of Rs5,00,000 would be charged per tower and Rs1,00,000 per service provider in case a tower is being shared by different companies. Towers more than five years old will also require a renewal within a month.
"The operators, who have erected cell towers without permission, shall apply to the MCD for regularisation within one month as per earlier policy in force prior to implementation of this new policy. In case of non-compliance, action for removal of such towers shall be initiated as per law," an official statement said here.
The committee observed that cell phone towers are damaging the city's skyline.
"In foreign countries, no such mobile towers are visible as they are using the latest technology. Since communication is an essential requirement of the society, the existing mobile towers cannot be demolished or sealed immediately," the statement added.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Fw: 60 people battle giants

Fw: 60 people battle giants
60 people battle giants
Thursday, January 01, 1970 5:30:00 AM
"Nidhi Jamwal"
"Manoj Shivram Londhe"

60 people battle giants
Rooftop radiation binds the Mobile Tower Grievance Forum

Rajil Menon
Banker, housewife, engineer, pujari. They came from all walks of life, from across Maharashtra, and met up for the first time in a public meeting at Mumbai's Shivaji Park. They exchanged notes, bonded, and vowed to work together. Each of the 60 people gathered under the Mobile Tower Grievance Forum had their own story to tell. They told stories of their battle against illegal installation of mobile towers, of money power, and of cancer, brain tumour, skin rashes and insomnia caused by the towers erected atop apartment buildings. The narrations cemented the group and the meeting culminated in an action plan that included selecting a 10-doctor team to document the impact of radiation from towers on people’s health. When the meeting started at 10.30 am on December 13 last year, the dilemma was palpable. Stray comments could be heard saying towers are needed to transmit the signals from cell phones.
But as the discussion progressed, the ambiguities evaporated because many speakers said the law was clear: before installing mobile towers near residential areas, companies have to get a no-objection certificate from the residents’ cooperative society and permission from the municipal corporation and the pollution control board. There should be a gap of 36 metres from human habitation, the law stipulated.

With the law on his side, S S Londhe, 78 and retired from service , is waging a lone battle; no one in his building talks to him and his family from the time he thwarted installation of a mobile tower in his building. “When we try to reason with them we are told to go and buy a flat elsewhere,” Londhe said.

The law does not help much, he added. “Companies first erect the mobile towers and then get them regularized by paying the municipality a fine of Rs 5,000,” Londhe said. If a survey were to be carried out, Londhe was certain, it would show most mobile towers are illegal.
The Londhes live on the top floor of the seven-storey Clement Court in Mumbai’s Dadar West. In late 2008, a mobile phone company approached the housing society for installation of a tower on top of the building and offered Rs 3.5 lakh a year as rent. In April 2009, during the housing society meeting, the Londhes opposed the tower. They were the only family to do so; all others were in favour of the tower, and the rent money. When Londhe showed them write-ups on radiation from towers, they laughed it off as “internet crap”.

On June 6, last year, by way of the majority, the society cleared the proposal to install a tower. Construction material was offloaded at the site on June 19. “But we were adamant,” Londhe said. “My son and I filed complaints with the municipal corporation. We also filed right to information (RTI) applications to know how the authorities sanctioned the tower. I also filed police complaints.” Construction has been stalled for now. “But it has not been cancelled yet,” he added. “Sometimes my son has to leave work at office and rush home to ensure the construction work does not begin illegally.” All this has paid off to the extent that in December, the company took back the construction material.

Listening to Londhe speak Vijaya Bhat, who came to the meeting with her husband Rajesh Bhat, commented she did not even get a chance to oppose the mobile tower in her building. When the residents moved in, they found the builder had already installed a mobile tower. The Bhats came from six-storey Riddhi Park building in Thakurli West, 50 km from Mumbai, to tell the story of Vijaya’s brain tumour which they suspect is linked to radiation from the tower. Rajesh is a Hindu priest and his wife Vijaya a homemaker. “Within four months of occupying the top floor flat, I began to fall sick.
Tests showed I had brain tumour,” said Vijaya Bhat, 33, addressing the gathering. She was operated last year at a cost of Rs 10 lakh.

The Bhats don’t live in their apartment any more; they have moved to a rented one. “My health is improving now. But even a day’s visit to the place I thought would be my home, makes me sick physically,” Vijaya said.

Her husband became agitated as Vijaya finished speaking and started hurling abuses at the government and at the politicians present at the meeting. “Do you understand the problems we common people have to face because of mobile towers? We have to suffer and die,” he burst out.

The Bhats are not the only ones suffering in the Riddhi Park complex. Rajesh said their neighbour is suffering from cancer of the spinal cord. Another neighbour gave birth to a child with birth defects; the child died soon after. He believes all this is linked to exposure to radiation from the mobile tower. “People are afraid of coming out and speaking openly against the tower,” Rajesh Bhat said.

All the 20-odd families residing in Riddhi Park are now demanding demolition of the mobile tower.

Laxmikant B Deshpande, telecom engineer, spoke next. He came from North Kasba in Solapur, 400 km away. He has been counting the deaths and listing their cause among people living within 300 feet (91.44 m) radius of a mobile tower. He found that in the last four years, nine people died since the installation of two towers (Vodafone and Idea) at North Kasba, near Tilak Chowk (see table). In Australia the price of the property goes down if there is a mobile tower in the vicinity, Deshpande told the forum.
The forum of people taking up cudgels against mobile towers is the brainchild of Milind Bembalkar, mechanical engineer who runs his own business in Latur, 750 km from Mumbai. He has been writing articles on the menace in Marathi newspapers and magazines for the past one year. When in one article Bembalkar asked readers affected by mobile towers to get in touch with him he was surprised to receive 300 letters. “I also received phone calls from all over Maharashtra expressing concern and helplessness. That was how the forum was born,” Bembalkar said.

Ramchandra G Pradhan, 83 years and a journalist, came to attend the meeting with plenty of reading material on the ill-effects of radiation from mobile towers. He resides in Thane district’s Bhavani Society. He erupted with skin rashes a year ago; these, he told the meeting, developed when a Bharati Airtel tower was installed atop his building. “We need to be aware of side-effects of radiation and then raise questions in the Assembly,” he said. Pradhan then lifted his shirt and showed the rashes all over his body, which he claimed, disappear when he stays away from his house. “My doctor has confirmed these rashes are linked to radiation from the mobile tower,” he added.

The forums’ first meeting ended with the release of a list of people who claimed they were suffering from sleep disorders, restlessness and fatigue since the time a mobile tower was installed on their building. They decided to first build a body of well documented case studies with doctors analyzing the cases; armed with facts on people’s suffering members said they would take the battle to its next stage.

For details see