The Centre on Friday removed Additional Central Bureau of Investigation Director M Nageswara Rao from his post and appointed him the director general of fire services, civil defence and home guard, ANI reported.

Rao was appointed the interim CBI chief after the Centre sacked Alok Verma from the post in October 2018 amid corruption charges against him. However, the Supreme Court reappointed Verma to the post in January. Later that month, the Centre removed Verma.

The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet, headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, made the change, PTI reported. “Upon the curtailment of tenure of M Nageswar Rao IPS (OD: 1986), Additional Director, CBI by the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet and placing of his services with the Ministry of Home Affairs, the competent authority has approved his appointment as Director General, Fire Services, Civil Defence and Home Guard by temporarily downgrading to the level of Additional Director General (level-15 of Pay Matrix), for a combined tenure upto his superannuation on July 31, 2020 or until further orders, whichever is earlier,” a statement issued by the Centre read.

Rao had served as the interim director of the CBI till February 1, 2019, after which he was removed from the post and appointed additional director. NGO Common Cause and Right to Information activist Anjali Bharadwaj had in January filed a petition challenging Rao’s appointment as the interim director.

However, the Supreme Court had dismissed the petition. On February 2, a selection panel appointed Rishi Kumar Shukla the CBI’s next director.