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CBI vs CBI LIVE: Alok Verma Quits After Turning Down New Role, Says Natural Justice Was Scuttled

News18.com | January 11, 2019, 4:16 PM IST
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CBI vs CBI LIVE: Former CBI director Alok Verma resigned from the services on Friday, a day after he was removed from the investigative agency's top post by the high-powered committee and transferred to head the fire services. In his resignation letter, Verma said he was not given a chance by the PM-led selection panel to explain the charges levelled against him by the Central Vigilance Committee before it removed him as CBI director on Thursday. Calling the decision to shunt him from the top post as “scuttling of natural justice”, he said that the entire process was turned upside down.

"Also, it may be noted that the undersigned already superannuated as on July 31, 2017 and was only serving Government as Director, CBI till January 31, 2019, as the same was fixed tenure role. The undersigned is no longer Director, CBI and has already crossed the superannuation age for DG Fire Service, Civil Defence and Home Guards. Accordingly, the undersigned may be deemed as superannuated with effect from today," Verma said in his letter to Secretary, Department of Personnel and Training Friday.
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Jan 11, 2019 4:16 pm (IST)

Former CBI director Alok Verma on Friday asked the government to treat him "deemed superannuated" with immediate effect. Refusing to take on his new assignment as Director General, Fire Services, Civil Defence and Home Guards, Verma wrote to Secretary, Department of Personnel and Training, stating the selection committee has not provided him an opportunity to explain the details as recorded by the CVC before arriving at the decision of transferring him.

Jan 11, 2019 4:06 pm (IST)

QUICK RECAP | A day after he was sacked as the CBI Director and transferred to head the fire services by a high-powered panel led by PM Narendra Modi, Alok Verma resigned from his office on Friday. Calling the decision to shunt him from the top post as “scuttling of natural justice”, he said that the entire process was turned upside down. The development comes two days after the Supreme Court reinstated him as the CBI Chief. Verma's removal by the committee on Thursday on charges of corruption and dereliction of duty in an unprecedented action in the central probe agency's 55-year history. 

Jan 11, 2019 3:56 pm (IST)

Sibal Dubs Alok Verma a 'Caged Parrot' | A day after a high-powered committee headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi removed CBI Director Alok Verma, former law minister and senior Congress leader Kapil Sibal on Friday said the panel had ensured that the "caged parrot" did not fly away, fearing it might spill the beans. Sibal took the dig at the government and tweeted, "The Committee ensured the caged parrot did not fly away fearing the parrot might spill the beans by parroting the goings on in the corridors of power. The caged parrot will remain caged," he said on Twitter.

Jan 11, 2019 3:52 pm (IST)

Alok Verma resigned from the post of Director, Fire Services on Friday, a day after he was removed as the CBI Director by a high-powered committee led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi:

Jan 11, 2019 3:46 pm (IST)

Alok Verma Calls it Quits | In a letter to the Secretary, Dept of Personnel & Training, former CBI chief Alok Verma, said, "The undersigned is no longer Director, CBI and has already crossed his superannuation age for DG Fire Services, Civil Defence&Home Guards. The undersigned may be deemed as superannuated with effect from today." 

Jan 11, 2019 3:32 pm (IST)

"Also, it may be noted that the undersigned already superannuated as on January 31, 2017 and was only serving Government as Director, CBI till January 31, 2019, as the same was fixed tenure role. The undersigned is no longer Director, CBI and has already crossed the superannuation age for DG Fire Service, Civil Defence and Home Guards. Accordingly, the undersigned may be deemed as superannuated with effect from today." Verma said in his letter to Secretary, Department of Personnel and Training Friday.

Jan 11, 2019 3:25 pm (IST)

Former CBI Chief Alok Verma Resigns from Service | Former CBI chief Alok Verma submitted his resignation from service on Friday, a day after he was removed from his post by a high powered committee.Verma said in his resignation letter, accessed by the news agency PTI, that it was a moment of "collective  introspection". 

Jan 11, 2019 3:05 pm (IST)

Delhi High Court refuses to grant interim protection to CBI Special Director Rakesh Asthana but asks CBI to maintain status quo for 2 weeks. "No doubt, registration of an FIR against a public servant will be a cause of great concern and stress for the public servant. Charges under the FIR are a matter of investigation. It is important that law presumes a person is innocent until proven guilty," rules the high court. Asthana was booked on charges of criminal conspiracy, corruption and criminal misconduct under sections of Prevention of Corruption Act. Hyderabad-based businessman Sathish Babu Sana, on whose complaint the FIR was lodged, alleged having paid bribe to get relief in a case. Sana had also made allegations of corruption, extortion, high-handedness and serious malpractice against Asthana. 

Jan 11, 2019 2:54 pm (IST)

Probe Against Asthana to Continue | The Delhi High Court Friday refused to quash the FIR lodged against CBI Special Director Rakesh Asthana on bribery allegations. Justice Najmi Waziri also refused to quash the FIR lodged against CBI Deputy SuperintendentDevender Kumar and alleged middleman Manoj Prasad.The high court's verdict came on petitions by Asthana, Kumar and Prasad challenging the FIR lodged against them. The court has directed the CBI to conduct the investigation in 10 weeks and submit a charge sheet.

Jan 11, 2019 2:48 pm (IST)

Verma Refuses New Assignment, Writes to DoPT Secretary | Alok Verma has refused to take charge as the DG of Fire Services after being ousted as the CBI Director by PM Modi-led high committee on Thursday, barely 48 hours after he was reinstated by the Supreme Court. The committee said he "had not acted with the integrity expected of him". Refusing to take any new assignment, Verma now writes to the DoPT of Secretary, says "natural justice was scuttled and the entire process was turned upside down in ensuring that the undersigned is removed from the post of the Director."

Jan 11, 2019 2:25 pm (IST)

All transfers and reshuffles initiated by former CBI chief Alok Verma have been nullified by interim chief Nageshwar Rao. Alok Verma, on his return to work three months after being sent on a forced leave, took a series of controversial decisions and he cancelled the transfers of 10 officers and transferred five others. Those who had been transferred included DIG Tarun Gabha and joint director V Murugesan. Other officers who had been transferred are joint director Ajay Bhatnagar, additional director AK Sharma and DIG MK Sinha. These officers were investigating Asthana at the time the government sent Verma on leave. Verma had also cancelled the transfer of officers considered to be his loyalists.

Jan 11, 2019 2:10 pm (IST)

ALSO READ | In and Out: How Have the Last 72 Hours Been for Alok Verma

The ousted agency director, who was sent on leave by the government amid a bitter power tussle with deputy Rakesh Asthana, now finds himself at the centre of a political war which may echo in upcoming general elections.

Jan 11, 2019 1:50 pm (IST)

CLICK TO READ | Former CBI Director Hints at Groupism Within Agency, Says New Chief Will Have to Rebuild Image

New Delhi: A high-powered committee headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday removed Alok Verma as the CBI director in a 2:1 decision.

Jan 11, 2019 1:49 pm (IST)

Nageshwar Rao Takes Charge as Director of CBI | M. Nageshwar Rao, Additional Director, CBI has assumed the charge of the office of Director, CBI after Alok Verma was transferred yesterday as DG Fire Services, Home Guards and Civil Defence. A high-powered committee headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday in a 2:1 decision removed Alok Verma as CBI director, making him possibly the first chief in the history of the agency to face such action. Just this week, Verma was reinstated by a Supreme Court order after he was sent on forced leave by the government. 

Jan 11, 2019 12:04 pm (IST)

Former AG Mukul Rohatgi says that he believes that Verma's statements about the verdict are not "in good taste." "If PM& a senior SC judge,after seeing CVC report, gave a decision, then its not fair for Verma to say the decision is bad.Govt should have settled this earlier," he says. 

Jan 11, 2019 11:50 am (IST)

ALSO READ | CBI Officer Supervising Probe Against No. 2 Rakesh Asthana Recuses Himself

Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) DIG MK Sinha in his plea to the CBI Director conveyed that in the interest of the investigation he may not be handed over the AC-III unit which is probing Asthana, amidst the ongoing feud between Verma and Asthana which has seen recent developments

Jan 11, 2019 11:45 am (IST)

According to officials, there were eight charges against Verma in the CVC report presented before the panel which included alleged attempts to induct tainted officers, compromising probe in the case related to controversial meat exporter Moin Qureshi, IRCTC scam among others.

Special Director Rakesh Asthana, with whom Verma had a public feud, had given a complaint against him to the Cabinet Secretary in August which was referred to the CVC.

The CVC report spoke about the controversial meat exporter Moin Qureshi's case and claimed that the CBI team looking into it wanted to make Hyderabad-based businessman Sathish Babu Sana an accused but Verma never gave clearance.

The probe in this case was led by Asthana who was later booked by the CBI on the basis of a magisterial statement recorded by Sana who had claimed that two businessman brothers had sought bribe of Rs 5 crore from him to get relief to him in a case against him using their contacts with the special director. ​

Jan 11, 2019 11:16 am (IST)

Former CBI Director AP Singh Hints at 'Groupism' in CBI | Hinting at an underlying ‘groupism’ within the investigating agency, A P Singh, former CBI director said the institution has suffered a big blow to its image. “The entire spat has definitely brought down the integrity of CBI. More than that, there is a perception that there is groupism going on in the CBI. Two groups are fighting against each other, making allegations against each other,” he said. “The new chief will also have to sort out this image. There are enough competent officers who have worked in the CBI and whoever is chosen will do a great job,” added the ex-CBI chief. 

Jan 11, 2019 11:15 am (IST)

'Fear is Now Rampaging Through Modi's Mind': Rahul Gandhi | Congress president Rahul Gandhi blamed the removal of CBI chief on the "fear" coursing through PM Modi's mind. The Congress claimed that Verma was removed without being given a chance to present his case, alleging that it showed that PM Modi was too afraid of an investigation, an apparent reference to its demand of a probe into the Rafale deal. "Fear is now rampaging through Mr Modi’s mind. He can’t sleep. He stole 30,000Cr from the IAF and gave it to Anil Ambani. Sacking the CBI Chief #AlokVerma twice in a row, clearly shows that he is now a prisoner of his own lies," tweeted Rahul.

Jan 11, 2019 11:14 am (IST)
br /> Congress Expresses Disagreement | The Congress party took to Twitter to express its disagreement with the decision.  "By removing AlokVerma from his position without giving him the chance to present his case, PM Modi has shown once again that he's too afraid of an investigation, either by an independent CBI director or by Parliament via JPC," tweeted Congress.

Jan 11, 2019 11:10 am (IST)

CLICK TO READ | Why PM Modi-Led High-Powered Panel Decided to Remove Alok Verma as CBI Director

Alok Verma, whose service tenure ends on January 31, has now been given the charge of DG Fire Services, Civil Defence and Home Guards.

Jan 11, 2019 11:09 am (IST)

Leader of Opposition Mallikarjun Kharge's Dissent Note | Mallikarjun Kharge, the dissenting member of the panel, questioned how Verma could be removed without a hearing and argued that he should be restored to "ensure independence and neutrality of CBI". Contending that the CVC report on which the committee's judgment was based,  lacked "substantial findings" against  Verma. Kharge's note further says that out of the 10 allegations against  Verma, only three were substantiated. Meanwhile the main allegation that Verma took Rs. 2 crore from a businessman being investigated by the CBI has not been substantiated, it adds. 

Jan 11, 2019 11:07 am (IST)

'False, Unsubstantiated, Frivolous Allegations': Verma | Breaking his silence over the issue, Verma, in a statement late on Thursday night, said the CBI being a prime investigating agency dealing in corruption in high public places is an institution whose independence should be preserved and protected. "It must function without external influences. I have tried to uphold the integrity of the institution while attempts were being made to destroy it. The same can be seen from the orders of the central government and the CVC dated October 23, 2018, which were without jurisdiction and were set aside," he said Verma termed it "sad" that he was transferred to another post pursuant to the orders of the committee on the basis of "false, unsubstantiated and frivolous allegations made by only one person, who was inimical to him".

Jan 11, 2019 11:06 am (IST)

PM Modi Led Committee Sacks Alok Verma | A high-powered committee headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday removed Alok Verma as the CBI director in a 2:1 decision. PM Modi and Justice AK Sikri -- representing Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi who had recused himself from the panel -- favoured Mr Verma's removal. Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge, representing the opposition, put up a dissenting note. Verma is possibly the first chief in the history of the agency to face such action. His service tenure ends on January 31 and he has now been given the charge of DG Fire Services, Civil Defence and Home Guards.

Jan 11, 2019 11:04 am (IST)

Delhi HC to Pronounce Verdict on Rakesh Asthana Plea | The Delhi High Court today, will announce its verdict on former CBI special director Rakesh Asthana’s plea to quash the FIR against him on charges of bribery. The charges were first taken up by former CBI director Alok Verma who accused Asthana of accepting bribes. Asthana, in return, charged Verma with similar acts of corruption following which the apex court ordered a Central Vigilance Commission inquiry. The two CBI officers were then sent on a forced leave by the government. Alok Verma was removed as the chief of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Thursday evening by a committee led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, barely 48 hours after he was reinstated by the Supreme Court. The committee said he "had not acted with the integrity expected of him". 

CBI vs CBI LIVE: Alok Verma Quits After Turning Down New Role, Says Natural Justice Was Scuttled
Alok Verma was removed from the post of CBI director by a high-powered committee chaired by PM Modi on Jan 10, 2019.

Meanwhile, the Delhi High Court has refused to quash an FIR against CBI Special Director Rakesh Asthana and few others, including deputy superintendent of police Devender Kumar. On the other hand, Alok Verma, who was removed by a high-powered committee, has turned down his new role as Chief of Fire Services and has written to the Department of Personnel and Training informing about his decision.

Kumar, who was earlier the investigation officer in a case involving meat exporter Moin Qureshi, has been arrested on the allegations of forgery in recording the statement of Sathish Sana, who had alleged to have paid bribes to get relief in the case, they said.

It is alleged that a statement of Sana was purportedly recorded on September 26, 2018 by the investigating team headed by Asthana, but it emerged in the CBI probe that on that given day the businessman was in Hyderabad, they claimed.

In his statement, Sana had purportedly said that he had in June this year discussed his case with Telugu Desam Party's Rajya Sabha member C M Ramesh who, after speaking to the CBI Director, had assured him that he would not be summoned again. "From June onwards, I was not called by the CBI. I was under the impression that investigation against me is complete," he is believed to have said.

The CBI has now alleged that Kumar had fabricated this statement as an "afterthought...to corroborate the baseless allegations made by Asthana against CBI Director Alok Verma to the CVC (Central Vigilance Commissioner)", they claimed. They said the agency was also looking into the alleged role of other members of the special investigation team headed by Asthana.

Asthana, who was booked by the agency on bribery charges in an unprecedented action, had complained against CBI Director Verma on August 24, 2018 that he had taken bribe of Rs 2 crore from Sana to give him relief in the matter.

The verdict on Asthana comes after the unceremonious exit of Verma, who was removed by a high-powered committee headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on charges of corruption and dereliction of duty.

Verma, in a statement late on Thursday night, said the CBI being a prime investigating agency dealing in corruption in high public places is an institution whose independence should be preserved and protected. "It must function without external influences. I have tried to uphold the integrity of the institution while attempts were being made to destroy it. The same can be seen from the orders of the central government and the CVC dated October 23, 2018, which were without jurisdiction and were set aside," he said.

Verma termed it "sad" that he was transferred to another post pursuant to the orders of the committee on the basis of "false, unsubstantiated and frivolous allegations made by only one person, who was inimical to him".

Verma’s ouster has also started a political slugfest, with the Opposition accusing the Centre of removing him to avoid a probe into the Rafale deal.

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