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You all have heard about the scams such as spectrum scam, coal scam and many more scams but the one we are writing about, ANTRIX-DEVAS, many of you might not have heard about. The scam involved our country’s own space research organisation i.e. ISRO and is another example why a single person should not hold two powerful spots at the same time.

Antrix is the name of the corporation, set up in 1992 with the sole aim to promote commercial exploitation of space products, technical consultancy services and transfer of technologies developed by ISRO. Devas multimedia Private Limited is a company formed by former ISRO scientist and an American company Forge Advisors. Both the companies are based in Bengaluru, Karnataka.

In January of 2005, an agreement was signed between Antrix corporation and Devas multimedia for leasing 90% of one of its three operational components, the space segment capacity, on two satellites for 12 years to Devas. In return, Antrix committed to Devas that it would build and launch 2 satellites – Primary Satellite 1 and 2. This will help Devas deliver services such as broadband to remote and required areas. The Union Cabinet approved the building of both satellites. With this deal, Devas multimedia got the S-band spectrum for commercial use by providing broadband services in India. The S-band spectrum which varies from frequencies 2 GHz to 4 GHz. The special thing about these S-band spectrum is that a particular range of frequencies(2.5 GHz to 2.6 GHz) in this band was allocated by the World  Radiocommunication Conference for telecom services. Thus the S-band spectrum provided for the rising demand for the mobile broadband services, which made it cost nearly ‌2 lakh crores rupees, which Devas multimedia got at a throwaway price. 

In addition to this, Antrix being the marketing arm of ISRO, ISRO was committed to build, launch and operate two custom-built communication satellites, which came to be called GSAT 6 and GSAT 6-A. Thus much of the costs required for the satellites were to be borne by public exchequer. The satellites mentioned were not ordinary satellites of the sort that ISRO had built and launched before. They involved high powered beams which would have large 6.5 metre antenna gain over a wide area of coverage in the S-band. ISRO has never flown a satellite like that before. With these being developmental satellites, the risk of problems arising were greater. The large antenna that could be unfurled in space was a huge concern for everyone. If it failed to open out properly, the entire satellite and project would fail and be useless. In addition, the Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV), on which the satellites were to be launched, could also not provide reliable service. But, Devas has its own terms and conditions for signing the agreement and had strict penalty clauses if this turns out to be a failure. Still, when the satellites become operational, the quality of service had to be provided. If something like that happens, a replacement satellite has to be provided within a specified time span at no extra cost to Devas.


As ISRO mentioned, this was the only company that came forward with a viable plan for the sort of satellite-based multimedia applications that were thought of and had a clear plan. However, no open competitive process (like bidding or interviews) seems to have been even attempted in making such a choice. Devas was headed by a person, who once held a senior position in the space programme of ISRO. And because of this, it was all more important for the deal to be shown in public interest and not tainted by any whiff of cronyism.

A preliminary estimate of the losses prepared by the Comptroller and Auditor General, VINOD RAI in 2011 had reported that Devas was allotted the spectrum of as much as ₹2 lakh crore. But, according to ISRO, Devas paid an amount of just $300 million (about ₹1400 Crores) over 12 years. ₹766 crore of public’s hard earned money would be spent on building and launching the two satellites but ANTRIX was only able to collect revenues from Devas of about  ₹1400 Crores over a 12-year period. It was admitted in the note to the Cabinet Committee on security that this would have not been sufficient compensation for all the costs incurred by ISRO.

Devas would have got control over a valuable part of S-band spectrum if the agreement signed with Antrix in 2005, the marketing wing of the ISRO, had been allowed to stand, Devas could have made billions and trillions and we would have never known. However, when in December 2009, the doubts over the deal began to surface, K. Radhakrishnan was appointed the head of the Department of Space.An internal committee under B.N.Suresh was set up to review the deal.

Later in May 2011, a high- level team headed by Vigilance Commissioner Pratyush Sinha was set up to examine and review the deal and identify the wrong doings of government officials.

G. Madhavan Nair, the ISRO chairman when the deal was signed was barred from holding any government position along with 4 other former officials, after considering the reports given by the Chaturdevi-Narsimha committee. But this action raises many questions. 

Is it the government’s view that these four officials were solely responsible for the deal?

What was the Space Commission doing, aren’t they the ones who have a key overview role over the space programme? 

Were the members of the Commission happily unaware of the deal that was made out? 

The agreement with Devas was known to the space commission as said by Mr. Nair. He also hinted that the government officials, including some in the PMO, were aware of the Devas contract but choose to remain silent. 

How was it possible that members of the Space Commission who were also on the Antrix board of directors and would have attended all the general meeting knew nothing of what was going on? 

The decision making and oversight processes in the space programme comes in question with this deal.  The government must come clean and tell the normal public on what actually transpired by placing in the public domain and how was their hard-earned tax paid money was used and the reports prepared by Dr. Suresh, the Chaturvedi- Narasimha committee and the high-level team.

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4 replies on “ANTRIX-DEVAS SCAM”

False News maker and Ex-ISRO Chief Mr.G.Madhavan Nair is a popular manipulator and a super-fast FRAUD. ISRO fund he diverted through outsourcing and bribed most of the media people for building his image and creating third-rated people around him for praising him for nonsense space activities. MOON mission was a failure. Moon Impact Probe NOT landed on the surface. Mr.Nair cheated the people of the country and the UPA Government. Media people tell the stories about Mr.Nair. For knowing more about his collusive corruption get a copy of the reply affidavit of ISRO against Mr.Nair in various courts. CBI reported that Collusive corruption is a formidable challenge to the investigating agency.
‌Mr.Nair did the BIGGEST SCAM in the history of Indian Union (2 lakh crores rupees). But Mr.Nair got bail. How? Please investigate. If NOT our country will loot by these borne criminals with white collar tag. Corrupted, and low IQ level people clapped hand on Mr.Nair’s activities while he was in ISRO report says. Dr.Manmohan Singh was clever enough to sack him from ISRO. Mr.Modiji is clever enough to handle Mr.Nair during his bail. Which brave PM of our country GRILL Mr.Nair. That will be a message to all corrupted executives of our country. Now SPACE PARK scam is coming up. A lady is behind it. Mr.Nair was there. Report from Kerala reveals. Please probe. Keram CM Principal Secretary an IAS man is under suspension, Hindu News paper reported. Media may please probe. That will be higher than ANTRIX-DEVAS scam.
We poor people post comments and moderator will delete it !! So the TRUTH will never come out.

We, at Sanely Written are closely monitoring misdeeds of Swapna Suresh and a blog might be live in near future regarding the matter. Unlike big players in media, we thrive by staying away from malarkey. Thank you for your useful comments.

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