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WATCH: Ex-ISRO Chief Claims Manmohan Singh's 'hands Were Tied', Narrates India's Space History

Author: Riya Baibhawi
Publication: Republicworld.com
Date: August 13, 2021
URL:       https://www.republicworld.com/india-news/general-news/ex-isro-chief-claims-manmohan-singhs-hands-were-tied-narrates-indias-space-history.html

Former Chairman of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), on Thursday, admitted that the UPA 2 government obstructed multiple space missions.

Former Chairman of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), on Thursday, admitted that the UPA-2 government obstructed multiple space missions during its rule. Speaking to Republic Media Network, G. Madhavan Nair revealed that the Human Spaceflight Programme, which was initiated back in 2007, could only gain pace after PM Modi took charge seven years later. While the top space scientist lambasted the UPA administration, he stopped short of blaming former PM Manmohan Singh and said that his “hands were tied.” 

“Starting from Indira Gandhi, the support which was given to ISRO by different Prime Ministers was fantastic. I had the opportunity to directly work with Vajpayee ji as well as Manmohan ji, both of them were receptive and have never put me down,” Nair said.

However, he pointed out that there was a “dark era” in between which saw a sharp decline in the activities of the space organisation. Only when PM Modi swore in, he said, that the programmes were revitalized.

“Modiji called secretary-level people and asked them to use whatever possible technology for the development of the country,” he said.

Talking about the Human Spaceflight Programme, Nair said that the project was approved and only a government nod was required to go ahead with it in 2019. However, with the Congress-led UPA dealing with new scams, the programme was put into the back banner. Highlighting the contrast between the two governments, Nair then said that it was “Modiji who showed the courage to support that.” 

Furthermore, the 77-year-old said that previously, the whole nation was going through “indecisiveness” but the right period has come now. He also opined that things would have been different had it all been left to Manmohan Singh’s discretion. “He could have done a different job, but his hands were tied,” Nair said.

'I don't want to put any names'

When asked who tied his hands, Nair, without taking names, blatantly admitted that UPA 2 regime was responsible for all the mess. “I don’t want to put any names, but all of you know,” he said. During the previous regime, he said, there was a “policy paralysis” and major decisions require for space programmes were not cleared.


Nair also expressed his shock over the unsuccessful GSLV-F10 launch mission but said the ISRO is resilient enough to bounce back. The ISRO launched GSLV-F10 rocket, with an earth observation satellite (EOS-03) on board, on Thursday at 0543 hours as scheduled, from Sriharikota spaceport.
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