A new book on the infamous 1994 ISRO spy case written by then investigating officer reveals that the then Chief Minister K. Karunakaran, who had to quit in 1995, was the "biggest loser".
Siby Mathews, who retired as the Director General of Police (DGP), reveals in his book titled 'Nirbhayam' that there could have been a conspiracy behind the episode.
Incidentally, this issue took place when the factional feud in the Congress party between the Karunakaran faction and the A.K. Antony faction led by Oommen Chandy was at its zenith.
Mathews in his book says that many at that time suspected there could have been a move by the Chandy faction, who took into confidence the Christian bishops, to bring down Karunakaran.
Mathews also revealed that he was under pressure from a few officers of the Intelligence Bureau to arrest the then Inspector General of Police Raman Srivastava.
"I was convinced that there was not enough evidence that could pass muster at the court, and hence I did not approve of the arrest of Srivastava," Mathews told the media in Thiruvananthapuram on Friday.
Srivastava, who retired as the state police chief, is currently the advisor to Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan.
The IB team consisted of a few north Indian officials and also two Keralite officials, A. Mathew John and R.B. Sreekumar, who retired as the Gujarat DGP.
Sreekumar responded to Mathews' claims, saying he was only a member of the team and not its leader.
The ISRO spy case surfaced in 1994 when top scientist S. Nambi Narayanan was arrested on espionage charges along with another top official of ISRO, two Maldivian women and a businessman, but the CBI cleared him in 1995. He has since then been fighting a legal battle against Mathews and two other police officials.
Narayanan had approached the Supreme Court after the Kerala High Court dismissed a single bench order that directed the state government to take action against the three retired police officers, who implicated and arrested him.
The case is now in the apex court.