India Investigates 'Havana Syndrome' and Microwave Weapons

India Investigates 'Havana Syndrome' and Microwave Weapons
Posted on 09-08-2023

India Takes Notice of 'Havana Syndrome' Concerns and Investigates Microwave Weapons

The 'Havana Syndrome' is currently in the news as the Central government of India has expressed its intention to investigate the matter. This decision follows a petition filed in the Karnataka High Court, requesting an inquiry into the 'Havana Syndrome' in India and the prevention of high-frequency microwave transmission. The petitioner cited Article 350 of the Constitution, which allows individuals to raise grievances with authorities. The court disposed of the petition on July 27, instructing the Centre to examine the case within three months.

The 'Havana Syndrome' refers to a set of unusual mental health symptoms reportedly experienced by US intelligence and embassy officials in different countries. These symptoms include hearing sounds when no external noise is present, nausea, vertigo, headaches, memory loss, and balance issues. The syndrome first gained attention when US diplomats in Havana reported feeling unwell after hearing strange sounds and experiencing odd physical sensations in 2016.

The exact cause of the 'Havana Syndrome' remains uncertain. Initially, it was believed to be a result of sonic attacks by Cuban intelligence agencies. However, a report by the National Academy of Sciences proposed that pulsed, directed microwaves could explain the syndrome. This report suggested that victims may have been exposed to high-powered microwaves that interfered with or damaged the nervous system, possibly through the use of a specialized device referred to as a "microwave weapon."

In India, the first reported case of the 'Havana Syndrome' occurred in September 2021 when a US intelligence officer traveling with CIA director William Burns to New Delhi experienced symptoms. As of July 2023, this remains the only reported instance of the syndrome in India.

Microwave weapons are considered a type of direct energy weapon that employs beams of high-frequency electromagnetic radiation to heat the water in a human target's skin, causing discomfort and pain. Several countries, including China and the United States, are believed to have developed such weapons for targeting both humans and electronic systems. China showcased its "microwave weapon," known as Poly WB-1, in 2014, while the United States has developed a prototype microwave-style weapon referred to as the "Active Denial System."

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