What fuelled the feud in CBI?

Saul Bowman
October 26, 2018

The move came a day after the courtroom drama involving director Alok Verma and special director Rakesh Asthana.

The government has sealed the offices of both Verma and Asthana and sent every single officer working their offices on leave too.

In an order dated 23 October, the appointments committee of the cabinet stated that M. Nageshwar Rao, now serving as joint director of the CBI, had been appointed interim director of the investigative agency.

Jaitley said on Wednesday that the government's decision to remove the CBI's two top officers was based on the Central Vigilance Commission's (CVC) recommendations.

Gandhi raised the issue at a rally in Jhalawar on Wednesday as well.

Senior BJP leader Prakash Javadekar rejected as "manufactured lie" Gandhi's charge that government panicked over the possibility of him investigating the Rafale deal.

CBI Dy SP Ajay Kumar Bassi, who was leading the investigating against Asthana, has been transferred to Andaman and Nicobar Islands with immediate effect, reported Indian Express.

The three complaints forwarded by the Cabinet Secretary on July 31, all pertaining to Mr. Verma are allegations that he received Rs. 2 crore bribe in the Moin Qureshi case, that he allegedly pressured officers not to conduct search at the premises of Lalu Prasad and other serious allegations regarding the functioning of the CBI.

Verma's petition is listed for hearing before a bench comprising Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justices SK Kaul and KM Joseph. Hence, the decision to suspend Verma could only be taken by the special committee, and not by the DoPT.

The four men have been identified as Dhiraj Kumar, Ajay Kumar, Prashant Kumar and Vinit Kumar Gupta. The officials carry their identity cards since they are on "routine duties", he explained. "One unit, in the early hours of today, halted at Janpath where there was an unusual collection of people", the official said.

"This is a high-security zone where several protectees reside".

Kejriwal retweeted Modi's June 5, 2013 tweet in which he had said it was "Unfortunate that in its quest to target political opponents, Centre is undermining intelligence systems with CBI questioning IB officials".

Though police sources said the men were being interrogated, Deputy Commissioner of Police (New Delhi) Madhur Verma denied that police had detained and questioned them.

In a statement, CBI spokesperson Abhishek Dayal termed the news report as false.

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