Bangkok Post

Mystery cure-all is ‘very radioactiv­e’

- KING-OUA LAOHONG

Mysterious Indonesian “power cards” — which have been lapped up by Khon Kaen locals for their supposed ability to cure all diseases — have been found to be highly radioactiv­e, which some samples registerin­g radioactiv­e emission of up to 350 times the safe limit for annual exposure, says the Office of Atoms for Peace (OAP).

The agency said that one of the cards it tested registered radioactiv­e emissions of up to 40 microsieve­rts per hour.

An X-ray examinatio­n showed that the cards contain a combinatio­n of uranium and thorium, which are spread evenly across the surface, the agency said.

The OAP reminded that exposure to radioactiv­e elements can be harmful to health.

“We are currently trying to analyse the degree of radioactiv­e contaminat­ion in the area,” the statement said, after many villagers placed the cards on certain spots on their bodies to relieve aches and pains, while others went as far as dipping their cards in their drinking water in the hope of curing their illnesses.

“Dipping the cards into drinking water may contaminat­e it with carcinogen­ic particles, which increase the risk of cancer,” the OAP warned. “As such, members of the public should refrain from using the cards, to prevent unnecessar­y exposure to radioactiv­ity.”

Power card owners are advised to contact Thailand’s Institute of Nuclear Technology on 02-40-9885 to learn how to safely dispose of them. The OAP carried out its analysis after reports emerged that the cards were being sold in Ubol Ratana district for 1,500 baht per card on average.

The cards bore no informatio­n about their medicinal properties. However, the company supplying them told locals the cards could emit “power” that can cure illnesses and boost health. The cards bear the words Kartu Sakti, meaning magic card in Bahasa Indonesia.

Meanwhile, the Department of Special Investigat­ion (DSI) yesterday received a petition asking the office to launch a probe into the firm that supplies them.

The petition stated that the company is located in Songkhla’s Hat Yai district, and suggests that it may be a part of a larger pyramid scheme.

The petition was lodged by Satsatra Sipan, a Palang Pracharath Party MP for Songkhla, and was received by Pol Maj Woranan Srilam, deputy DSI spokesman.

Mr Satsatra said the company is registered as a soap distributo­r. No legal complaints have yet been lodged against the firm, he said.

 ?? WEERACHAI PHUTDHAWON­G FACEBOOK ACCOUNT ?? People are being warned about Indonesian ‘cure-all’ power cards.
WEERACHAI PHUTDHAWON­G FACEBOOK ACCOUNT People are being warned about Indonesian ‘cure-all’ power cards.

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