Wireless connectivity silently creating medical problems: Expert
Chandigarh, A 39-year-old acoustic engineer who worked in a television studio for eight hours a day and six days a week for eight years went to see an ENT doctor after he felt the ground turn under his feet. He was also constantly ill at ease.
 
The symptoms did not have a pattern and the doctor was not able to pinpoint a diagnosis. The engineer was asked to go on a month-long vacation in the countryside -- sans most of the technology around him. When he returned, the symptoms had disappeared.
 
"In my area (of work), I see a lot of patients, especially young ones, who come up with complex symptoms. These symptoms were not so common earlier. I have been in the medicine field since 1985. I am talking about things (symptoms) of the last 10 years, which I did not see in my last 20 years before that," Dr Vikas Nehru, an ENT (ear, nose, throat) surgeon by profession and training, told IANS in an interview here.
 
Nehru, who is now a Dubai-based specialist and worked as an Associate Professor at the Post-Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research (PGIMER) here, has highlighted the growing instances of health issues related to the use of technology -- especially the electro-magnetic (EM) radiation coming from the devices -- in his recently released book 'Global Wireless Spiderweb'.
 
"There are certain medical problems which we ourselves had also not seen earlier. We had no diagnosis and treatment. I researched a lot in this field. These problems are related to things that happened particularly in the last 10 years, though it started in the later part of the 20th century," Nehru said.
 
"We are increasingly exposed to an invisible web of radiation all around us through the wireless devices we love so much. With the advent of cloud computing and the Internet of Things set to launch more than a trillion smart devices, the radiation is only going to get worse," he warned.
 
In his book, Nehru breaks down the implications of a paradigm shift that has changed "invention from a child of necessity to a mother of greed".
 
Explaining what science tells us about the web of radiation, Nehru said: "We are seeing more brain tumors, higher incidences of infertility, more cases of electro-hypersensitivity, and numerous other disorders. Even more concerning, radiation is damaging the human DNA."
 
"Huge corporations continue to fund their own studies offering a false counter-narrative to make people feel safe. They also employ lobbyists to deflect attention from public health to what's in their own best interests. The governments are letting the usage of wireless technology to be implemented without realizing the health consequences of it," he said.
 
Many institutions have looked at EMF and have not painted the dire predictions that the doctor says could be the outcome. A UN body cautioned against too much use of mobile phones, but definitive studies on adverse effect of EMF are not available.
 
Nehru says the "invisible waves are becoming denser and denser by the day. This is not good. Nobody is even talking about the bad effects of this radiation. People only talk about air pollution. There is not even a mention of electro-magnetic pollution.
 
Actor Juhi Chawla, who has read Nehru's research and recently launched his book in Mumbai, is involved with a NGO that is creating awareness about the harmful effects of EM radiation.
 
Nehru pointed out that to strengthen the network of mobiles and WiFi, mobile towers are being increased and boosters are being installed to ensure that signals reach all corners.
 
"A new layer has been added to our atmosphere by human activity. Starting from 1G and 2G which mostly used wired technology, we are now using 3G and 4G technologies which carry signals into space. The 5G technology, which we are looking forward to, can be very harmful," he said.
 
Mobile phones have come under attack from many NGOs and activists, but several studies have pointed to only mild effects.
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.
  • User

    COMMENTS

    Ramesh Poapt

    2 years ago

    very good one indeed!

    Fazal MG

    2 years ago

    What about Very High Frequency signals of FM Radio/Dish Antennas?

    Floating Rate: Arbitrary & Opaque Policy, Unfair Terms & Charges
    Moneylife has been raising the issue of arbitrary and opaque bank policies with respect to floating rate loans. Borrowers, who have taken loans on a floating rate basis, suffer an immediate increase when interest rates are hiked by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) but do not get much relief when rates go down. This makes a mockery of the very concept of ‘floating’ rates. We have highlighted this issue in several articles and our Cover Story “Banksters” (Moneylife, 28 April-11 May 2017). 
     
    We now have proof of how unfairly banks were treating their customers. This has been laid bare by a study group of the RBI itself, called the ‘Internal Study Group to Review the Working of Marginal Cost of Funds Based Lending Rate (MCLR) System’. 
     
    The report of the study group provides a shocking account of how wide and deep banking malpractices are with regard to floating rate loans. It confirms every one of our arguments about how banks cheat customers, fudge rates, extort conversion charges, etc. The RBI study has highlighted how banks deviated in an ad hoc manner from the specified methodologies for calculating the base rate and the MCLR, to either inflate the base rate or prevent the base rate from falling in line with the cost of funds. It says, “Banks have been quite slow in migrating their existing customers to the MCLR regime. Most of the base rate customers are retail or small and medium enterprise (SME) borrowers. Hence, the banking sector’s weak pass-through to the base rate is turning out to be deleterious to the retail and SME borrowers in an easy monetary cycle.” 
     
    The report points out that the pass-through to outstanding loans from the repo rate was around 60% during the tightening phase (July 2010 to March 2012), while it was less than 40% during the subsequent easing phase (April 2012 to June 2013). Private sector banks took “almost six months for the transmission from the lower MCLR to actual lending rates. However, in the case of public sector banks, the transmission was not complete even after six months.” 
     
    The group concluded that “spreads charged by some banks seem excessively and consistently large” and that “arbitrariness in calculating the base rate/MCLR and spreads charged over them has undermined the integrity of the interest rate setting process. The base rate and MCLR regimes are also not in sync with global practices on pricing of bank loans.” Given how serious these findings are, it is only fair that RBI should direct banks to calculate the excess interest they have charged (through arbitrary and ad hoc calculations of base rate or MCLR) and refund the money to borrowers, especially retail borrowers and SMEs.
     
    The question is: What is RBI doing after it has discovered such widespread malpractices? So far, nothing. Moneylife Foundation has already written to RBI governor, Urjit Patel, to direct banks to do this. It should also issue a circular/master direction asking banks and financial institutions to allow existing borrowers to migrate to MCLR or any new system without any conversion fee or any other charge for the switchover. Special helplines may be required to facilitate this conversion. 
     
     
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    COMMENTS

    nadeem

    2 years ago

    When approached to lower interest rates, many financial institutions charge money for doing that!! Unless the RBI formulates a model agreement having some clauses protecting the interests of the borrower, the borrower will always remain hapless/ helpless.

    Widespread use of unapproved GM cotton shows official tolerance of illegality
    The Andhra governments flip-flop on extensive cultivation of unapproved genetically-modified (GM) herbicide-tolerant (HT) cotton seems to be symptomatic of the complacency which has infected even regulatory bodies and research institutions.
     
    In February, the Central Institute of Cotton Research (CICR), (Nagpur) had found six of nine cottonseed hybrids testing positive for herbicide tolerance. It did not bother to inform the state government until this month, and that too, only when Maharashtra's Principal Secretary, Agriculture, Bijay Kumar, sought to know whether such a report in fact existed.
     
    Kumar had sought information after he was alerted by media reports about extensive cultivation of HT cotton in Gujarat, Maharashtra, Andhra, Telangana and Karnataka.
     
    CICR told the principal secretary that it had not by itself collected the samples, but a person claiming to be a farmer from Nagpur had brought the seeds to the institute for testing.
     
    The institute said it was for state governments to do the testing at its laboratories, but Kumar says the state's laboratories do not have the capacity to test for herbicide tolerance, although they are equipped to test for the insect-resistance Bt gene, which is an approved trait.
     
    It is unlikely that the state's agriculture department and seed inspectors did not know that HT cotton was being illegally grown. 
     
    India has tough laws and regulations for approval of GM crops -- they are required to meet strict bio-safety standards to obviate risk to humans, animals and the environment -- but attitudes like that of CICR and the state agriculture departments allow a free play to rogue actors.
     
    Even the Genetic Engineering Appraisal Committee (GEAC) turned a blind eye to the issue. It says it came to know only recently that unapproved HT cotton was being grown. Monsanto, which owns the HT trait found in CICR's samples, says it has been bringing the practice to the notice of GEAC since 2008 and most recently in August.
     
    The Andhra government's actions are quite curious. On October 5 this year, it set up a committee of three persons to study the "efficacy" of the unapproved HT trait, instead of investigating the practice, and punishing the violators. The committee was to give its report in 15 days. 
     
    On October 13, Reuters reported that the notification setting up the committee had been withdrawn. On October 17, the state set up another three-person committee, comprising another set of members, to investigate the cultivation of the unapproved hybrids, and lodge criminal cases against violators under the environment protection law.
     
    The notification says the October 5 committee was set up after "careful consideration." It says the state had received a representation from farmers to allow seed companies with the right credentials to produce HT cottonseed, so they were assured of quality. In the representation, the farmers said the unapproved hybrids had been planted in half of the state's cotton-growing villages and they covered 15 percent of its cotton area.
     
    In neighbouring Telangana, T Keshavulu, Director, Telangana State Seed Certification Agency said, "I am hearing it is being grown here and there and in the entire country." But another official in the agriculture department, who did not wish to be named, said HT cotton was being sold by Gujarati traders in 500 gram and 1 kg white cloth bags and there was a rise in sale of glyphosate, the active ingredient in the herbicide to which the unapproved hybrids are tolerant. 
     
    The state's laboratory which monitors transgenic crops had even found a brand of cottonseed called Kamadhenu testing positive for the herbicide-tolerance trait. 
     
    Kumar said he has asked CICR to put the state's investigators in touch with the Nagpur farmer who had given it samples of HT cottonseed so he could lead them to the suppliers. He has also ordered the investigators to take samples of cotton leaf and bolls. He has promised tough action.
     
    Telangana's agriculture department official said a scheduled meeting with seed companies to discuss cottonseed production plans, which is usually held in November has been advanced to October. The production plots of the seed companies will be tested, he said.
     
    But the paste is out of the tube and there is no way to put it back. States will not be able to crack down on farmers. And the pirates will find ways to meet demand.
     
    The government's attitude to intellectual property rights (IPR) has been hostile to trait developers. Monsanto's associate company, Mahyco, withdrew the application for approval of HT cotton in August last year, fearing difficulty in enforcing its rights if the patented trait were approved.
     
    During a recent meeting with seed companies, GEAC Chairperson Amita Prasad asked Raju Barwale of Mahyco why the company had withdrawn its application. He said the business was not viable. In May 2015, the central government had not only brought Bt cottonseed under price control nationally, it had also cut trait fees by 74 percent.
     
    Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.
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