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Kerala cop framed Nambi Narayanan in ISRO espionage case in anger and vengeance after a Maldivian woman rejected his advances: CBI tells court

According to the chargesheet, Vijayan later found Rasheeda's connection to ISRO scientist D Shasikumaran, prompting Kerala Police officers to place Rasheeda and her Maldivian friend Fauzia Hasan under surveillance.

On the 10th of July, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) told a Thiruvananthapuram court that the 1994 ISRO espionage case was fabricated by a senior Kerala cop to illegally detain a Maldivian woman after she turned down his romantic advances. The CBI said the case in which ISRO scientist Nambi Narayanan was falsely accused was fabricated by a then-special branch officer of the Kerala police.

The CBI chargesheet states that the then special branch officer, S Vijayan contrived the case after a Maldivian woman named Mariyam Rasheeda turned down his love advances. CBI alleged that S Vijayan confiscated Rasheeda’s travel documentation and airline tickets to stop Maryam Rasheeda from leaving India. Vijayan later retired as a Superintendent of Police (SP).

According to the chargesheet, Vijayan later found Rasheeda’s connection to ISRO scientist D Shasikumaran, prompting Kerala Police officers to place Rasheeda and her Maldivian friend Fauzia Hasan under surveillance.

Meanwhile, the Kerala Police alerted the Subsidiary Intelligence Bureau (SIB) about the women, but when IB officers checked the foreign nationals, they found nothing untoward, according to the CBI. Rasheeda was then arrested under the Foreigners Act for overstaying in the country sans a valid visa, with the knowledge of the then-Commissioner of Police in Thiruvananthapuram and the SIB Deputy Director.

Vijayan allegedly submitted a false report accusing Rasheeda and Hasan of violating the Official Secrets Act since her custody was coming to an end. Following this, an espionage case was filed, which was later moved to a Special Investigation Team (SIT). The SIT then arrested four ISRO scientists, including Nambi Narayanan.

The CBI chargesheet alleges that the initial wrongdoings were compounded by creating additional allegations against Narayanan and others.

The CBI, in its final report, suggested that former Director Generals of Police (DGPs) R B Sreekumar and Siby Mathews, former SPs S Vijayan and K K Joshua, and former intelligence officer P S Jayaprakash be prosecuted for their involvement in this conspiracy.

Notably, the CBI has booked these people under various the Indian Penal Code including sections 120B (criminal conspiracy), 342 (wrongful confinement), 323 (voluntarily causing hurt), 330 (voluntarily causing hurt to extract a confession), 167 (public servant framing an incorrect document), 193 (giving false evidence), 354 (outrage modesty of a woman).

Citing lack of evidence, the CBI refrained from recommending prosecution of the other 13 accused including the then IB officers and Kerala Police officers.

Reacting to the development on Wednesday, Nambi Narayanan said that his role in the matter is over since he has proved his innocence. He added that he does not wish those people to be jailed or apologise to him. However, he would have been happy if the accused officers admitted that they made a mistake.

It is pertinent to note that the CBI in its 1996 investigation report concluded that the cases against Nambi Narayanan and others were fabricated. The CBI in its report had observed that “The aforesaid IB officials comprising the team enquiring into ISRO case acted in an unprofessional manner and were privy to the arrest of six innocent persons, thereby causing them immense mental and physical agony.” The CBI had also clearly indicted Srikumar for “failing in their duty to conduct the inquiry in an objective and fair manner.”

The Supreme Court ordered a high-level investigation into the role of erring police officials in the Nambi Narayanan espionage case in 2018. On September 14, 2018, the Supreme Court appointed a three-member committee and ordered the Kerala government to pay Nambi Narayanan Rs 50 lakh in compensation for subjecting him to extreme humiliation.

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OpIndia Staff
OpIndia Staffhttps://www.opindia.com
Staff reporter at OpIndia

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