Lack of spectrum, tower radiation fears behind call drops: Prasad

Ravi Shankar Prasad, Minister of Communications and Information Technology of India at the World Economic Forum - India Economic Summit 2014 in New Delhi, Copyright by World Economic Forum / Benedikt von Loebell

New Delhi: Communications Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad, referring to telecom operators citing both shutting down mobile towers due to radiation fears, and the lack of spectrum as major reasons for call drops, on Thursday, said diverse complaints could not be linked together.

Ravi_Shankar_Prasad_At_Office“The complaint against call drops and that against tower radiation cannot go together,” Prasad said answering questions at an event here organised by the Ficci-supported International Chamber of Commerce.

Telecom operators said that about 7,000 to 10,000 tower sites were locked or shut down across major urban centres and urged a national policy for installation of mobile towers.

The minister spoke of “a sinister campaign” of the ill-effects of mobile tower radiation.

“There is an exhaustive World Health Organisation report on the matter that this radiation is not injurious to health. One should only think of the radiation that one is normally exposed to in doing X-rays or MRI’s,” he said.

On the other hand, the minister had a stern word for telecom operators on the issue of infrastructure and asked them to deliver “good services”.

“Spectrum has been given (with clearing of spectrum sharing and trading). Now, don’t give the impression that you only want to collect customers and give no thought to good services. Operators should optimise their network, synchronise the network and also invest in the network,” he added.