Two persons with whom this reporter makes enquiries do not know where he lives. They have all forgotten him.
Fortunately, the gate proudly wears a name board: ‘S. Nambinarayanan.’ He sits on a sofa in his dim lit drawing room, cool and detached. The news about the verdict of a Division Bench of the Kerala High Court ordering the State to pay him an interim immediate relief of Rs.10 lakh for defaming him with the infamous ISRO spy scandal case, mixing sex and international espionage, has just hit the screens of television channels. But, his television is switched off.
A crew from a channel too is immediately in. He tells the young television reporter what it is all about. “I was arrested, charged in the ISRO spy scandal case on November 30, 1994.” He remembers all the dates. “The court freed me of the charges on April 29, 1998.”
“The National Human Rights Commission ordered payment of compensation of Rs.1 crore to me in March, 2001, of which Rs.10 lakh was to be paid immediately. The State does not want to admit they have falsely done it to me. So the fight continues,” he says.
“Do you think someone has conspired?” asks the reporter. He smiles, as though at his grandson. “Those things happened 18 years ago. You were a child then. The compensation award came 12 years ago. The expression used was ‘to pay an immediate interim relief of Rs.10 lakh.’ So the word ‘immediate’ means 12 years up to the Division Bench of the Kerala High Court.”
He says he knows the case will now go to the Supreme Court. “That is how it is,” he says.
“What you have to do, you have to do. There was a time when I was shattered. My professional life as a good ISRO scientist was shattered. My personal life was shattered. My wife had problems.”
He does not elaborate, but the day he was arrested there was a big crowd at his gates and people were pushing to break the police cordon and throwing punches at him as he was being taken to the police jeep. “I have written all that in my book. It is in the manuscript stage,” he says.
“Whatever one does in life is a repetition of what one has done several times in one’s life. The character never changes. You may not understand it, but you will be doing the same things again and again.”
“My life had two stages so far. I was a scientist. The only thing then was the profession. My career suddenly came to an end, and from then on this is what I do. We don’t choose…and we don’t back out either… It is not the compensation. We don’t buckle,” he says.