Saturday, September 15, 2018

SC awards ₹50L to scientist framed in false Isro spy case

Nearly 24 years after scientist Nambi Narayanan was framed and arrested in the so-called Isro spy case, the Supreme Court created history on Friday by invoking constitutional powers to direct the Kerala government to pay Rs 50 lakh compensation to him for “blatant violation” of his right to life. The SC held that Narayanan’s right to life was infringed on by wrongful arrest and torture and ruled that the compensation is paid in eight weeks. Narayanan was arrested in 1994 for allegedly leaking defence secrets relating to an Isro project to two Maldivian women — Mariam Rasheeda and Fauzia Hassan. Along with another scientist, D Sasikumaran, he was accused of selling secrets. Though the concept of compensating a “wrongly arrested” person is absent in the Indian criminal justice system, a bench of CJI Dipak Misra and Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud not only ordered the Kerala government to pay the hefty compensation but permitted Narayanan to proceed with his civil suit seeking more damages from the state government.

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