The Kerala government would soon release the Rs 50 lakh compensation to former ISRO scientist Nambi Narayanan as directed by the Supreme Court in the espionage case and explore possibilities of recovering it from officials responsible for lapses in the probe, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said Thursday.
A cabinet meeting also decided to nominate former bureaucrat V S Senthil as the state nominee to the committee appointed by the top court to examine the lapses by Kerala police in the investigation in the 1994 case.
In its recent landmark verdict, the Supreme Court awarded Rs 50 lakh as compensation to the 76-year-old Narayanan for being subjected to mental cruelty and asked the state government to pay it to him within eight weeks. It also ordered a probe into the role of Kerala Police officers in it.
Narayanan had to spend close to two months in jail before the CBI concluded the allegations against him were false. “The state cabinet decided to allot Rs 50 lakh as compensation to Nambi Narayanan as part of implementing the court verdict. The amount will be disbursed soon,” Vijayan told reporters here.
The Chief Minister also said the cabinet decided to ask the state Law Department to look into the possibilities of collecting the compensation amount from the then investigating officials who were responsible for the lapses.
The espionage case, which hit the headlines in 1994, pertained to allegations of transfer of certain confidential documents on Indias space programme to foreign countries by two scientists and four others, including two Maldivian women.
The case was first investigated by the state police and later handed over to the CBI, which found the allegations to be false.
The scam also had its political fallout with a section in the Congress targeting then chief minister late K Karunakaran over the issue, eventually leading to his resignation.