Monday, February 6, 2023

Central Government: CBI Director has no case pending complaint or court case against him

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The Bombay High Court was apprised by the Central Government that the Director of Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) Subodh Kumar Jaiswal has enough experience dealing with anti-corruption cases and has no pending complaint or court case against him.

An affidavit was filed before the High Court by the under secretary of the Ministry of Personnel & Public Grievances which said that Jaiswal has handled anti-corruption cases including economic offences, white collar crime, corporate crimes along with cases under Prevention of Corruption Act (PCA)

Dismissal of PIL was sought by the government, in the petition filed by retired Assistant Commissioner of Maharashtra Police (ACP) Rajendrakumar Trivedi who challenged appointment of Jaiswal’ as the director of the investigating agency.

Rajendrakumar Trivedi has challenged continuation of Jaiswal as CBI chief mentioning his less experience in investigation of anti-corruption cases and has doubtful credibility.

The Court had earlier issued notice in the matter.

The counter affidavit said that as per the Delhi Special Police Establishment Act (DSPE Act), a superintendent of police at district level is empowered to register and investigate offences under the PCA.

It was stated that Jaiswal had served as superintendent in three districts, Commissioner of Mumbai Police (which is the biggest commissionerate of the country) and as the Director General of Maharashtra Police before he was made the CBI director.

It was also mentioned that as per the DSPE Act, anti-corruption cases are not limited to PCA cases, but also include economic offences, white collar crimes, corporate crimes, vigilance matters and so on.

The Ministry of Personnel & Public Grievances Under Secretary said that the legal provision for appointment of a CBI director are met in the case.

A committee which monitors the appointments, had considered all factors including the overall suitability based on seniority, integrity, experience in investigation and anti-corruption work, etc.before the appointment.

The reply pointed that Committee had access to all the service records available with cadre controlling authority as well as vigilance clearance with reference to all the officers belonging to the senior-most four batches of the Indian Police Service.

Form the records available, there was nothing to indicate any pending complaint or court case pending against Jaiswal.

The Government after viewing the same stated that the contentions raised in the PIL were devoid of merits, and were solely based on assumptions.

Assistant Commissioner of Maharashtra Police (ACP) Rajendrakumar Trivedi has filed a rejoinder saying that the Central government cannot join hands with CBI for the purpose of filing common affidavit as the agency was impleaded through its Director.

The possibility of the same being influenced by Jaiswal or CBI cannot be ruled out, Trivedi said in his affidavit.

The affidavit expects an impartial non-partisan and detached approach in filing its reply.

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