Haji Ali dargah trust gets away with mobile tower, cuts radiation risk

Oct 09, 2018, 17:20 IST | Hemal Ashar

The towers, which were emitting worrying amounts of radiation at that frantically busy spot, have disappeared from view

Haji Ali dargah trust gets away with mobile tower, cuts radiation risk
Here's a before view of the spot near Haji Ali Juice Centre

The landscape around the popular and crowded Haji Ali juice centre looks transformed, thanks to an entire cluster of mobile towers atop the Haji Ali Dargah Trust office that has now been removed. The towers, which were emitting worrying amounts of radiation at that frantically busy spot, have disappeared from view. For a few years, the tower cluster seemed omnipresent and in fact, was one of the most visible signs above the famous juice centre. The Dargah office is next to the centre. The towers used to yield Rs 80 lakh annually to the dargah trust.

Vanishing act
Suhail Khandwani, Haji Ali dargah trustee said, "We have finished removing all the towers, sometime ago. We had been sent a notice by the Collector that the Trust needed to pay some rent to them from the proceeds of the income we got from the Towers. Then, of course, we are also aware that radiation from mobile tower antennae is harmful to health. We have thousands of devotees visiting every day, it is better if we remove the towers."

Here's a after view of the spot near Haji Ali Juice Centre
Here's a after view of the spot near Haji Ali Juice Centre

Health wealth
Khandwani, who is also trustee at Mahim Dargah, claims that the Trust puts aside at least R1 crore a year for charity, "which includes education for the needy and medical aid. We, the trustees thought it was hugely ironical that we put aside funds for medical help, but, these towers affect people adversely. We have foregone a huge sum that was used to benefit the poor, but we have decided to raise this from our own resources." Mohammed Ahmed Tahir, administration officer of the Trust, added that the Trust "did not renew the contracts of the service providers from December 2017, itself. The towers were then removed."

Cop health
Prakash Munshi, from Citizens For Tomorrow, actor Juhi Chawla Mehta's initiative to increase awareness about mobile tower radiation and perils of plastic, said Haji Ali dargah honchos should take a bow. "Congratulations for removing the antennae... I remember back in 2013, the police on duty at the Haji Ali circle used to complain about headaches and sleep disorders when on duty there. They'd requested for a change of place after a week," he said.

Rs 80 lakh
What the dargah trust earned from the towers annually

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Trupti Desai enters Haji Ali Dargah

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