Fake case filed against Nambi Narayanan at behest of ISI to stall ISRO’s cryogenic engine tech: CBI
New Delhi, July 31: Was the false case against former ISRO scientist Nambi Narayanan and others filed at the behest of the ISI. The Central Bureau of Investigation which is probing the case said that it suspects that false cases were foisted against the eminent scientists of the ISRO at the behest of the ISI.
Additional Solicitor General, S V Raju appearing for the CBI told the Kerala High Court that this is a serious matter that involves national security and the ISRO's cryogenic engine technology was derailed with the registering of this espionage case.
He said that had this case not been filed then India would have developed the cryogenic engine 20 years back. The scientists were arrested, humiliated and tortured. They were not allowed to carry out any sensitive work, Raju also said. This was done at the behest of foreign powers and we suspect that a false case was foisted against the scientists at the behest of the ISI, he also added. We strongly believe that Pakistan had a role to play in the matter. Those who foisted the false case had succeeded in dealing the project, Raju also added.
He also concluded that the CBI found that no offence was committed by the persons that had been arranged as accused in the case. The probe is currently on based on the Justice Jain Committee report to conduct a probe against 17 former Kerala Police officers and the then Intelligence Bureau deputy director R B Sreekumar for hatching a conspiracy to frame a case against Narayanan and other the CBI also submitted.
It may be recalled that the Supreme Court had on September 14 2018 appointed a three member panel headed by former judge, D K Jain to look into the case. The court had also ordered the Kerala government to pay Rs 50 lakh as compensation to Narayanan for compelling him to undergo immense humiliation in the fake espionage case. The court ordered a CBI probe after the panel submitted its report. The court also directed the CBI to act against those officers involved in the fake espionage case.
Narayanan was wrongly accused of selling state secrets such as confidential test data of rocket and satellite launches. In 1994 he was arrested on espionage charges.
The 76-year-old former ISRO scientist Nambi Narayanan had filed an appeal against the judgement of division bench of the Kerala High Court which had said no action was required to be taken against the former DGP and two retired Superintendents of Police, K K Joshua and S Vijayan, who were held allegedly responsible by the CBI for his illegal arrest.
He said the division bench had "failed to appreciate the real undercurrent that passed through the mind of the SC, the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) and the single judge of high court in their verdict and on untenable reasons, quashed the order of the single judge."
The Supreme Court had in 1998 granted compensation of Rs one lakh to Narayanan and others who were discharged in the case and directed the state government to pay the amount.
Later, Narayanan had approached NHRC claiming compensation against the state government for mental agony and torture suffered by him.
The NHRC, after hearing both sides and taking into account the Supreme Court's judgement of April 29, 1998 awarded an interim compensation of Rs 10 lakh on March 14, 2001.
Challenging the legality of the high court's division bench order, he had said it was "bad in law" and sought an interim stay contending that "the illegality in the judgement impugned, if allowed to perpetuate, would only encourage the unlawful action and mindset on the part of the Kerala police to harass innocent persons for extraneous considerations.
"And unless action as suggested by the CBI is immediately taken, (possibly under the provisions of Section 195 of the IPC if for any justifiable reason departmental action could not be taken), the innocent public would suffer at the hands of the Police."
Narayanan had said it was hence "appropriate that the impugned judgement of March 4, 2015 of the High Court of Kerala... is stayed and the State Government initiate action as deemed necessary during the pendency of this SLP.