ISRO job is not allocation of spectrum, clarifies Madhavan Nair

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Coimbatore, Feb 9 (ANI): Former Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) Chairman, G. Madhavan Nair has said that allocation of S-Band spectrum is not the job of the organisation.

"The job of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) is to build and operate satellites and provide satellite-based services to users. It does not sell spectrum and does not allocate spectrum," he told reporters here on Tuesday.

He said ISRO is given a clean chit by the government itself saying that since there was no transaction between the organisation and any other party, so there was no loss of revenue to the exchequer.

"No decision has been taken by the government to allocate space segment using S-Band spectrum to Antrix Corporation or Devas Multimedia. Since no transaction has taken place, there is no loss of revenue. So this is the statement issued by the Prime Minister's office and this is absolutely accurate," added Nair.

On Tuesday, the Prime Minister"s Office (PMO) issued a statement which denied reports that a private company has been allotted a whopping 70MHZ of spectrum for barely Rs. 1000 crore through a deal with the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO), which reports directly to the Prime Minister.

In a statement issued here, the PMO clarified that no decision has been taken by the Government to allocate space segment using S Band Spectrum to ANTRIX Corporation or Devas Multimedia.

"Hence, the question of revenue loss does not arise and any such reports are without basis in fact," the statement added.

The Comptroller and Auditor General's office and the Department of Space have already issued statements giving the factual position.

Meanwhile, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) pulled up the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA) Government at the Centre, claiming that the reply of the PMO on the S-Band scam is unsatisfactory.

BJP General Secretary Ravi Shankar Prasad said: "In the recent 3G spectrum auction, the Government had earned 67, 710 crores and the Wi-fi auction had earned them 38,000 crore."

"So, in total, they earned more than one lakh crore in the auctions. We would like to ask the Prime Minister Manmohan Singh that as spectrum is a national asset and when they are given to an organisation like ISRO, they are trustees for the spectrum and they cannot alienate it by transfer or lease in any other way," he added.

It was reported in a section of the media on Monday that ANTRIX Corporation, the commercial arm of ISRO entered into an agreement in 2005 with Devas Multimedia allowing use of 70 megahertz of S-band spectrum without inviting bids resulting in huge revenue loss to the exchequer. (ANI)

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