Airtel, RCom, Vodafone found violating radiation norms

Airtel, RCom, Vodafone found violating radiation norms New Delhi: Seven telecom operators, including RCom, Tata Teleservices Maharashtra, Airtel and Vodafone, have been found violating radiation norms laid down by the government after a random check conducted by officials at a location in Mumbai.

"...11 BTSs (Base Tower Stations) of Reliance Communications, TTML, Airtel, Vodafone, Idea Cellular, Aircel and Loop Telecom were found radiating beyond permissible limits of the new radiation norms when measurements were carried out in some houses facing nearby BTS antenna," DoT said in an official statement.

"Orders were issued to 7 operators to stop radiating from these BTSs with immediate effect," it added.

Functioning of the BTSs may be resumed only after the sites are made compliant and information to that effect is verified by Telecom Enforcement and Resource Monitoring (TERM) Cell Mumbai, the statement said.

When contacted, industry body COAI - which represents GSM players - Director General Rajan S Mathews said the operators should be given some time to ascertain about towers which are non-compliant.

CDMA industry body AUSPI offered no immediate comment.

A DoT official told PTI: "Show cause notices will be issued to these companies on penal action but keeping in mind public health as top priority, we ordered them to shut down these BTSs immediately."

The new radiation norms, applicable from September, have lowered limit of emission from telecom towers by one-tenth compared to earlier levels.

Under the new guidelines, emissions from telecom antenna mounted on mobile towers should be equivalent to frequency range in which the antenna operates. Like, an antenna operating in the frequency range of 400 Mhz will be allowed to emit 400 watt of energy per 2,000 square metre of area.

Also, it has set minimum distance of a tower (with two antenna) will be 35 metres from a residential building.

There is also norm to impose penalty of Rs 5 lakh per BTS (antenna system at a tower site) per service provider.

PTI