Prashant Bhushan: Alok Verma's reinstatement partial victory

Jan 08, 2019, 12:20 IST | IANS

Bhushan said that the court has directed the matter to bring to this high-powered committee within a week

Prashant Bhushan: Alok Verma's reinstatement partial victory

Senior Supreme Court advocate Prashant Bhushan on Tuesday described the Supreme Court order to reinstate Alok Verma as the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) Director as a "partial victory", as he was not been given full powers.

"The Supreme Court has today quashed the government's decision and the CVC's (Central Vigilance Commission) decision to divest Verma of his powers as the CBI Director and they have restored him as CBI director," Bhushan told the media outside the court following the judgement.

"But strangely quashing the orders divesting him as CBI Director and despite restoring him, the court has said that he will not take major policy decision till such time that this high powered committee comprising the Prime Minister, Leader of Opposition and Chief Justice of India meets and considers the matter," he said.

Bhushan is one of the petitioners for the Common Cause NGO, which has challenged the order sending the CBI director on leave and divesting him of all powers.

His remarks came soon after the apex court restored the powers of the Verma as it set aside the Centre's decision to divest him of his powers to function as the head of the investigating agency.

While restoring Verma's powers, a bench of Chief Justice Gogoi, Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul and Justice K.M. Joseph said that the matter will go to the selection committee, which will look into the issue. Bhushan said that the court has directed the matter to bring to this high-powered committee within a week.

"Till that time they have restored Director and he will not take any major policy decision. "Its a case of partial victory for Verma in the sense he has been restored and the order removing him has been quashed," he said, adding that the order appointing M. Nageswara Rao as the acting Director has also been quashed.

"But unfortunately and strangely he has been restrained from taking major decisions so his full powers have not been restored."

The Supreme Court pronounced the judgement on a plea by Verma and Common Cause challenging the government's decision on the intervening night of October 23-24 to divest him of his charge as head of the investigating agency.

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