CVC gets 14 days to finish probe against CBI chief
SC's direction comes amid protests outside CBI offices by Congress leaders
The Supreme Court on Friday set a two-week deadline for the Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) to complete its probe against CBI chief Alok Verma, who along with Special Director Rakesh Asthana was divested of their duties and sent on leave following their bitter feud, and appointed a former apex court judge to monitor the inquiry.
The direction by the top court that was welcomed by both the government and the Opposition Congress came amid nationwide protests outside the CBI offices by Congress leaders led by party chief Rahul Gandhi against the order of the government to strip Verma of his powers and sending him on leave. The Congress demanded "reinstatement" of Verma.
Gandhi courted arrest after leading a protest of party workers outside the CBI headquarters in the national capital and was taken to nearby Lodhi Colony police station where he was detained for 30 minutes along with other party leaders before they were let off.
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said the apex court order was a "positive development." The court also observed it did not want the CBI issue before the court to linger on. "This is not in the interest of the country," it said. The court made it clear the supervision of the probe by a former SC judge was a "one-time exception" given the "peculiar facts" of the case and does not cast reflection on any authority of the government.
Rao cannot take major decisions
The SC clipped the wings of IPS officer M Nageswara Rao, who has been given interim charge of looking after the duties of the CBI director, by barring him from taking any "policy" or "any major decision". The court said all the decisions taken by Rao from October 23 till today be placed before it in a sealed cover.
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