Former head of Indian Space Research Organisation’s (ISRO’s) cryogenics division N Nambi Narayanan got some relief from the Supreme Court which, on September 14, ordered compensation of Rs 50 lakh to him for the humiliation and suffering he went through over 24 years after being arrested by the Kerala police in the alleged ISRO spy case of 1994.
But a co-accused, a labour contractor from Bengaluru, S K Sharma, who also went through much the same humiliation and misery, besides being socially ostracised as a “traitor” for his “involvement” in the alleged ISRO spy scandal, is battling not only for public justice but also for life as he fights a stage-4 cancer. Sharma, now 62, a friend of D Chandrasekhar who was also one of the accused in the case and who passed away hours before the September 14 Supreme Court order, says although he kept quiet all these years, now he wants to be vindicated as his “days are numbered”. “For my children’s sake, I want my name to be cleared in public so that the people — even family and friends — who cut off from us and called me a ‘traitor’, know that I was, and I am, innocent,” says Sharma, who is suffering from stage-4 oesophagus cancer which has spread to his lungs.
He is undergoing palliative care since the last three years. Nambi Narayanan, who says he knows Sharma to be a calm and amicable man, hopes that like him, some justice is dispensed to the Sharma family, too. “He suffered just as I did, and that’s why I have been encouraging Sharma to tell his story. He needs to have the satisfaction of knowing that those who accused him of being a spy are brought to justice,” he told TNIE.