Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission has drafted guidelines for limiting radiation from base transceiver stations of mobile phone operators.
The telecom regulator on Thursday published the draft guidelines on its official web site seeking opinion from stakeholders, experts, researchers and any other interested party within February this year.
The guidelines were prepared following an instruction from the High Court in March last year that had directed the BTRC to take active and positive steps for formulating immediately a final set of regulations or guidelines for limiting radiation from the BTS.
In 2012, the Human Rights and Peace for Bangladesh filed a petition with the High Court over the radiation level of mobile phone towers.
The draft guidelines titled ‘Limiting Exposure to Radiation of Electromagnetic Fields (up to 300 GHz)’ say that once enacted, its compliance will be mandatory for mobile phone operators.
Besides, it also says that the any sort of violation of the guidelines will result in legal actions under the Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulation Act 2001.
As of June 30, 2017, there were 78,066 BTSs in operation in the country.
BTRC officials said that a number of international organisations, including World Health Organisation, International Commission on Non-Ionising Radiation Protection and International Telecommunication Union, had already taken several initiatives keeping in mind the negative impacts of radiation emitted through mobile phone towers.
On the guidelines, the commission has adopted the values released by the ICNIRP.
It also mentions that if the standards are maintained, there was no known harmful influence on human health, according to the WHO and the ICNIRP.
The guidelines also say that it will allow specifying exposure limits to protect against established adverse effects to health and environment induced by exposure to Radio Frequency electric, magnetic and electromagnetic fields over the frequency range up to 300 GHz.
It will also provide guidance for evaluating RF exposure levels along with ensuring that personnel in controlled and uncontrolled environments are not exposed at levels greater than the limits specified in these guidelines.
Apart from formulation of the draft guidelines, the commission has already initiated a move to procure radiation measurement tools following the High Court order.
Purchasing of two radiation measurement tools along with two cars for their transportation across the country would cost around Tk 3.40 crore.
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