A panel led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi is likely to meet on Thursday to select a new director of the Central Bureau of Investigation.
The panel also comprises Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi and Mallikarjun Kharge of the Congress, who is the leader of the largest Opposition party in the Lok Sabha. They will meet at Modi’s official residence.
The previous director, Alok Verma, was removed by the committee on January 10, two days after being reinstated by the Supreme Court. Verma was first removed by the government in October amid infighting at the agency and allegations of corruption. He then challenged the government’s move in the top court.
Kharge had opposed Verma’s removal at the January 10 meeting. That panel did not include Gogoi, who had recused himself as he was on the bench that had reinstated the former CBI director. Justice AK Sikri, who is the second most-senior judge in the top court, had taken Gogoi’s place at the meeting
M Nageswara Rao, who was appointed interim director, promptly reversed all the transfers ordered by Verma after taking back charge.
The home ministry has come up with a list of 17 senior Indian Police Service officers from the 1983, 1984 and 1985 batches to succeed Verma, reports said last week. The list has been sent to the Department of Personnel and Training, which has shortlisted some names, IANS reported.
Last week, Kharge had asked Modi to make public the documents related to the decision to sack Verma so that “the public can draw their own conclusions”. The Central Vigilance Commission had levelled eight counts of charges against Verma, including corruption and dereliction of duty. However, even the judge who had supervised the CVC’s inquiry, AK Patnaik, had admitted there was “no evidence of corruption” against Alok Verma.