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1994 ISRO spy case: Ex-Kerala DGP Siby Mathews arrested Nambi Narayanan without proof, reveals CBI chargesheet

The CBI chargesheet revealed that former cops had fabricated the 1994 ISRO espionage case and arrested then scientists including Nambi Narayanan illegally.

1994 ISRO spy case: Ex-Kerala DGP Siby Mathews arrested Nambi Narayanan without proof, reveals CBI chargesheet anr
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First Published Jul 10, 2024, 5:20 PM IST

Thiruvananthapuram: In the 1994 ISRO espionage case, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) chargesheet stated that former C.I. S Vijayan fabricated the spy case and filed a case against Mariyam Rasheeda, a Maldivian native, without substantial evidence. A case was registered against her at Vanchiyoor police station without proof. 

The CBI had filed a chargesheet against two former DGPs, Siby Mathews of Kerala and R. B. Sreekumar of Gujarat, and three other retired police officials in connection with the alleged framing of space scientist Nambi Narayanan in the 1994 ISRO espionage case.

The CBI chargesheet says, " The facts and circumstances emerged during the investigation of CBI has revealed that this is a clear case of abuse of law/authority right from the initial stage as victim Mariyam Rasheeda was detained illegally and framed with the false overstaying case. To sustain the initial wrongs, another case of serious nature was launched with false interrogation reports against victims."

The chargesheet further mentions, " The facts and circumstances substantiate role of accused  S Vijayan, Siby Mathews, KK Joshua, RB Sreekumar and PS Jayaprakash in the registration of the false cases under the Foreigners Act and Official Secrets Act against two Maldivian ladies Mariyam Rasheeda and Fauzia Hasan, two ISRO scientists D Sashikumaran and Nambi Narayanan and two other persons K Chandrasekhar and SK Sharma (both deceased). The said accused persons played an active role in conspiracy to create false documents, leading to illegal arrests, torture etc."

According to the chargesheet, CI Vijayan came to the hotel room where Mariyam Rasheeda was staying and made sexual advances towards her. However, she spurned the sexual advances of Vijayan and he left the room immediately. This provoked him and he found that Rasheeda was in contact with scientist D Sashikumaran, working in the Liquid Propulsion Systems Centre (LPSC) at ISRO. 

In October 1994, the Kerala Police registered two cases following the arrest of Maldivian national Rasheeda in Thiruvananthapuram for allegedly obtaining secret drawings of ISRO rocket engines to sell to Pakistan. Nambi Narayanan, then director of ISRO's cryogenic project, was arrested along with ISRO deputy director D. Sasikumaran and Fousiya Hasan, a Maldivian friend of Rasheeda.
 

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