5G Photograph:( AFP )
Several misleading messages are being circulated on various social media platforms, claiming that the second wave of coronavirus has been caused by the testing of the 5G mobile towers
The Indian government has been forced to issue a clarification that the recently approved 5G trials are not linked in any way to the sharp rise in COVID-19 infections, after rumours linking the two gained mileage in certain areas.
The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) said there is no link between 5G technology and the spread of Covid, as it urged the public not to be misguided by baseless and false messages being circulated on social media platforms.
Several misleading messages are being circulated on various social media platforms, claiming that the second wave of coronavirus has been caused by the testing of the 5G mobile towers.
“...these messages are false and not correct...the general public is hereby informed that there is no link between 5G technology and spread of COVID-19 and they are urged not to be misguided by the false information and rumours spread in this matter. The claims linking the 5G technology with the COVID-19 pandemic are false and have no scientific basis,” DoT said in a statement.
The testing of the 5G network has not yet started anywhere in India, therefore the claim that 5G trials or networks are causing coronavirus in India is “baseless”, it said.
“Mobile towers emit non-ionising Radio frequencies having very minuscule power and are incapable of causing any kind of damage to living cells including human beings."
“DoT has prescribed norms for exposure limit for the Radio Frequency Field (i.e. Base Station Emissions) which are 10 times more stringent than the safe limits prescribed by International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP) and recommended by WHO (World Health Organization),” it said.
Outlining the initiatives already taken, the DoT said it has a well-structured process so that operators strictly adhere to these prescribed norms.
“However, any citizen having any apprehension about any mobile tower emitting radio waves beyond the safe limit prescribed by the department, a request for EMF measurements/testing can be made on Tarang Sanchar portal at https://tarangsanchar.gov.in/emfportal,” the department said.
Earlier on May 8, the Cellular Operators Association of India (COAI), an industry association representing India’s private telecom services providers such as Bharti Airtel, Reliance Jio, and Vodafone Idea, had put out a clarification on the same issue.
(With inputs from agencies)