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Alok Verma back as CBI boss, but conditions apply

A select committee comprising of the PM, the CJI and the Leader of Opposition will decide on what action — if any — must be taken against Alok Verma, the Supreme Court ruled today as it reinstated him as the CBI director. Verma was sent on leave by the government after a feud between him and his deputy, CBI special director Rakesh Asthana, became public. The two top CBI officers had accused each other of corruption, leading to the situation being termed CBI vs CBI. Alok Verma contended that the Narendra Modi government had not authority to send him on forced leave, while the government maintained that the charges against him needed to be independently investigated. Follow where we bring you the latest from the Supreme Court.

ICYMI: Supreme Court resintates Alok Verma as CBI boss but with riders

The Supreme Court today quashed the government’s midnight move to send CBI chief Alok Verma on forced leave. The Supreme Court reinstated Alok Verma as CBI director but said that he will not be allowed to take any policy decisions. The Supreme Court said it was quashing the order sending him on leave since the government had no authority to take action against the Director of the Central Bureau of Investigation.

The only institution that can take any action against a CBI director is the special committee that appoints the director, the Supreme Court ruled today. (This committee consists of the Prime Minister of India, the Chief Justice of India and the Leader of the Opposition in the Lok Sabha.) This committee has been requested to meet within a week and consider whether any action needs to be taken against Alok Verma with regards to the allegations of corruption against him.

Until then, Verma cannot take any major policy decisions.

The Supreme Court order today came on a petition filed by the Alok Verma challenging the government order sending him on leave. Verma, who retires on Janurary 31, was sent on leave in the aftermath of a bitter public feud with CBI’s No. 2 officer Rakesh Asthana. Both Verma and Asthana accused each other of being corrupt and both were sent on forced leave by the government.


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