Thrissur: Training his guns on the opposition Congress-led UDF in Kerala, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that ISRO scientist Nambi Narayanan was falsely entwined in an espionage case. He alleged that some party members wanted to settle political score.
Talking about the Padma Bhushan for former Nambi Narayanan, which was announced by the Centre among the fourteen recipients, the Prime Minister said it was an honour for his government to have got the opportunity to confer the Padma Bhushan to the scientist.
Modi termed Nambi as a hard working and patriotic scientist. He said, the UDF for its own politics damaged the national interest. He further added that his government valued each and every person who is working to make India stronger.
He further said that for the opposition science is for spying but for him science was a matter of pride. Solar was a matter of scam for the opposition, but for him it was a matter of development.
The espionage case in 1994 involved transferring of certain confidential documents on India’s space programme to foreign nations by two scientists and four others.
On 30 November 1994, Nambi Narayanan was arrested while he was working on cryogenic engine technology at ISRO.
The Supreme Court on 14 September 2018, however, cleared the scientist of all charges and ordered a high-level probe to put to task erring police personnel for arresting him and directed the Kerala government to pay Rs 50 lakh to the scientist as compensation for undergoing immense humiliation.
Former DGP Siby Mathews and two retired Superintendents of police K K Joshua and S Vijayan were later held responsible by the CBI for the scientist’s illegal arrest.