New Delhi: CBI Director Alok Verma was removed on Thursday by a high-powered panel headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
1. Verma was reinstated by the Supreme Court on Tuesday, setting aside the October 23 order of the CVC and the government divesting Verma of his powers and functions. The apex court, however, said any further decision against Verma, who retires on January 31, would be taken by the high-powered committee which selects and appoints the CBI director.
2. The committee comprised Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi and the Leader of Opposition Mallikarjun Kharge. CJI Gogoi had, however, nominated Justice AK Sikri in his place for Thursday’s meeting.
3. The committee had also met on Wednesday but it remained inconclusive after Kharge demanded to know specific information on some key issues.
4. The decision for Verma’s removal on Thursday was taken by a majority. Kharge, however, opposed his removal.
5. Verma was removed from his post on charges of corruption and dereliction of duty making him the first chief in the history of the agency to face such an action. There were eight counts of charges against him in the CVC report presented before the committee.
6. According to a letter from the Appointment Committee of the Cabinet, Verma has been posted as director general, fire and services, civil defence and home guards for the residual period of his present term, which ends on January 31.
7. The letter also said M Nageshwar Rao will take over duties of the director, CBI till the appointment of the new director.
8. Verma, who had resumed office on Wednesday, had revoked most of the transfers done by M Nageshwar Rao, who was appointed as the interim CBI chief in his absence.
9. By removing Alok Verma from his position without giving him the chance to present his case, PM Modi has shown once again that he’s too afraid of an investigation, either by an independent CBI director or by Parliament via JPC, Congress said in a statement.
10. On 23 October, the Centre sent both special director Rakesh Asthana and Alok Verma on leave, divesting them of their powers. The Centre intervened after the battle between the two top cops spun out of control with both levelling bribery and graft charges against each other.