Economy

Roddam Narasimha quits Space Commission

Our Bureau Bangalore | Updated on March 12, 2018

In a new twist to 'Antrix-Devasgate', Space Commission's longest serving member, Dr Roddam Narasimha, has sought to quit the post.

The main reason is that he is upset over the recent blacklisting of three former ISRO technocrats including Mr G. Madhavan Nair, former ISRO Chairman, for their perceived role in the controversial agreement of 2005.

Dr Narasimha was on the Prime Minister's two-member High-Powered Review Committee that first went into the controversial sweetheart agreement between ISRO's commercial entity and start-up Devas Multimedia in February-March 2011.

ISRO released this report on February 4/5 in the wake of the Department of Space blacklisting three technocrats based on the HPRC report and another one thereafter.

This is the first open statement or move he has made since February 2011.

Dr Narasimha refused to speak but released a statement on Friday evening. It said: "I wish to clarify that I have requested the Prime Minister to permit me to relinquish my membership of the Space Commission.

"There were two reasons for my request. First, I considered that the actions taken recently against certain ISRO scientists in connection with the Antrix-Devas agreements could demoralise the ISRO scientific community, and adversely affect its ability to take the kind of technological initiatives that are the hallmark of an innovative organisation.''

The Prime Minister had not yet accepted his resignation, he said.

ISRO, he said, is a great organisation and a national asset with hard-working and dedicated scientists.

Secondly, he said their panel had also recommended reforms including some concerning the Space Commission. Having served on it for almost two decades, he should not be on it when the reforms were to be taken up.

Published on February 24, 2012

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