London, Mar 30: Mobile phones can kill far more people than smoking or asbestos, a recent study suggests. Cancers take at least a decade to develop within a person who had used the phones for that long. Using handsets for 10 years or more could double the risk of brain cancer, experts said. People should avoid using mobiles wherever possible and that governments and the mobile phone industry must take 'immediate steps' to reduce exposure to their radiation, specially young people who were at particular risk.
Professor Khurana, a top neurosurgeon admits that mobiles could save lives in emergencies, but concludes that ''there is a significant and increasing evidence for a link between mobile phone usage and certain brain tumours.'' ''We are currently experiencing an unchecked and dangerous situation. Unless the industry and governments take immediate and decisive steps, the incidence of malignant brain tumours and associated death rate will be observed to rise globally within a decade from now, by which time it may be far too late to intervene medically,'' The Independent quoted him as saying.
Smoking kills some five million worldwide each year, and exposure to asbestos is responsible for as many deaths as road accidents. ''It is anticipated that this danger has far broader public health ramifications than asbestos and smoking,'' said Professor Khurana, adding the fact that three billion people now use the phones worldwide, three times as many as smoke.