A petition in the Supreme Court has challenged the appointment of former Central Bureau of Investigation special director Rakesh Asthana as director general of the Bureau of Civil Aviation Security, ANI reported on Wednesday.
The petitioner, advocate ML Sharma, challenged the appointment citing a pending first information report against Asthana on bribery allegations, according to Bar and Bench. The Delhi High Court had on January 11 refused to quash the FIR against Asthana.
The Centre had appointed Asthana the director general of the Bureau of Civil Aviation Security on January 18 for two years, a day after removing him and three other officers from the Central Bureau of Investigation. The Bureau of Civil Aviation Security, a branch of the Ministry of Civil Aviation, is the regulatory authority for the sector in India.
The Bharatiya Janata Party-led National Democratic Alliance government in October had sent Asthana and CBI Director Alok Verma on leave after they accused each other of corruption. After being reinstated by a Supreme Court order on January 8, Verma was removed from the post again two days later.
Asthana was accused of receiving kickbacks and extorting money from Hyderabad-based businessman Sathish Babu Sana, who was being investigated in the Moin Qureshi corruption case. Qureshi is accused in multiple graft cases. Asthana, in turn, accused Verma of trying to falsely implicate him, and levelled corruption charges against him.
A panel led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi will meet on Thursday to select a new director of the Central Bureau of Investigation.