RaGa accuses senior CBI officer for helping Mallya escape
The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) expects to fly its first small rocket with a carrying capacity of about 500-700 kg sometime next year, according to a top official.
“The developmental work for our small rocket that can carry satellites weighing around 500 kg is on. The first flight of the small rocket is expected to happen sometime next year,” ISRO Chairman, K Sivan said.
He said the small rocket will be launched from the existing rocketport at Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh.
S Rakesh, chairman-cummanaging director of Antrix Corporation, said the lowcost small rocket requires a dedicated launch pad with a simple vertical launch mechanism. “Though SSLV will be initially launched from our rocketport at Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh, we want to have a separate spaceport for it later,” Rakesh had said.
Queried about Rakesh’s views on the separate spaceport, Sivan said initially the small rocket will be flown from Sriharikota. Antrix may have its own plans for the future.
Incidentally, Antrix is calling Indian nationals to apply for the post of Head, Manufacturing & Marketing of Space Systems’. The job description being: “Preplanning activities of new Space Transport Systems, which Antrix is envisaging to put into production. Establishment of production facilities in co-ordination with ISRO and Industries for Technology Transfer and production of the System.”
Sivan also said ISRO is evaluating the various proposals it has received for its lithium-ion battery technology and is expected to complete the process in a month’s time.
“In a month or so the first level of screen of the proposals will be over,” Sivan said.
Over 130 companies had shown interest in the Indian space agency’s lithium-ion cell technology. ISRO had announced its decision to transfer this technology to the Indian industry on a non-exclusive basis for usage in automobiles for R1 crore in June.
Congress President Rahul Gandhi has accused former CBI joint director AK Sharma of helping fugitive businessman Vijay Mallya to escape from the country.
He said Sharma, who was in the CBI in 2015, was also “in charge of Nirav Modi and Mehul Choksi’s escape plans”.
The Congress President has alleged that Sharma is Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s “blue-eyed-boy” in the CBI.
However, the CBI said its officers had no hand in the escape of diamond traders Nirav Modi and Mehul Choksi in connection with the over R12,000 crore Punjab National Bank (PNB) scam.
ISRO chairman K Sivan
Rahul Gandhi; (inset) Vijay Mallya