Antrix Deal: Scientists Slam Blacklisting of Nair, Others

Antrix Deal: Scientists Slam Blacklisting of Nair, Others
Two top scientists today slammed the blacklisting of former ISRO chief G Madhavan Nair and three others over the Antrix-Devas deal and demanded that reports of two expert committees on the issue be made public.

They also warned that such action being taken without giving the scientists a fair hearing would impact on the decision-making process at ISRO and the country's space programmes.

"It’s ridiculous in a democracy. What kind of democracy are we running," rued former ISRO chief Prof U R Rao.

"If there is something wrong, please go ahead and take action (against them). You don’t give them a chance to defend themselves?...Under what circumstances they agreed (for the deal) and so on. What country are we running? On what basis they have taken action," he told PTI.

Eminent nuclear scientist M R Srinivasan asked, "Are these scientists solely responsible? Are there others also? Who were the others in the decision-making loop? Has responsibility placed on them also?" the former Chairman of Atomic Energy Commission said.

"Why action only against the scientists and not others also?" he asked.

Rao welcomed ISRO Chairman K Radhakrishnan’s statement on the intention of the space agency to make public two reports on the basis of which the four space scientists were blacklisted and debarred from any government job.

"Why two committees? Why two reports?," he asked, and pointed out that in the five-member team, only the names of Pratyush Sinha and Radhakrishnan are in the public domain. “Who are the other three?”

In addition, did these two committees have "right type of people?" he asked, noting that the technology in question is difficult and complex, and "space communication is totally different from land-line communications".
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