TIRUNELVELI/CHENNAI: Three employees, including two senior officials of ISRO Propulsion Complex, Mahendragiri in Tirunelveli have come under scanner for alleged procedural lapses and have been kept under temporary suspension pending enquiry.
Deviprasad Karnik, Director of Publications and Public Relations, ISRO, confirmed the development to Express and identified the officials as Group Director Jessy Flora, Deputy General Manager Jesammal and an engineer Jebastine Donbraj. However, he didn’t reveal the reason for the suspension.
Sources said an internal inquiry had been ordered. The preliminary reports emerging from the closets of IPRC suggest that some procedural lapses have happened in procurement process. The suspension came into effect from July 13.
Only a few days ago there was a leadership change in IPRC.
S Pandian, who was serving as Associate Director of Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC), took charge as Director of IPRC and PV Venkitakrishnan, who was serving as IPRC director since December, 2016, was transferred to the VSSC.
When contacted, a top official downplayed the incident, saying it was purely an internal matter and there were ‘minor’ procedural lapses. “There is nothing for media to focus on,” he said. Pandian was not available for comments.
ISRO chairman AS Kiran Kumar did not respond to calls. The IPRC is situated near Kavalkinaru. It is a major testing hub of ISRO’s liquid propulsion systems responsible for the development, qualification and acceptance testing of sub-systems and systems for launch vehicles and spacecraft projects. Currently, the centre is undergoing major fabrication and infrastructure development for ambitious Chandrayaan-2 mission for which rover landing experiments will be conducted at IPRC.