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CBI vs CBI LIVE: PM Modi Panicked Over Rafale Deal Probe and Removed Alok Verma, Says Rahul Gandhi

News18.com | October 25, 2018, 6:11 PM IST
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CBI vs CBI LIVE Updates: Congress president Rahul Gandhi launched a blistering attack on the Narendra Modi government for divesting CBI director Alok Verma of his powers as he questioned why was the action taken at 2am. Gandhi, addressing a press conference, alleged that the Prime Minister panicked because Verma was set to probe the controversial Rafale deal and removed him from his post in the garb of cleaning up the investigative agency.

The Congress president said that the action was taken in the dead of the night so that Verma's office could be sealed and incriminating documents on the Rafale fighter jet deal could be destroyed.
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Oct 25, 2018 6:11 pm (IST)

Dassault is going to say what the government wants it to say: Rahul Gandhi

Oct 25, 2018 6:09 pm (IST)

Throughout all this, the Prime Minister has not said a word, Gandhi said. "You call the prime minister and ask him questions and he won't even be able to even sit here."

Oct 25, 2018 6:06 pm (IST)

The Prime Minister will attack every institution to protect himself, Gandhi further said. "We asked Finance Minister to set up a JPC probe but that has not happened." 

Oct 25, 2018 6:04 pm (IST)

“CBI director has been asked to go on an indefinite leave. CBI director cannot be removed by PM,” Gandhi said. The Congress president further alleged, “He (PM Modi) knows that the day CBI inquiry starts, it will all be over for him. And this was a panic reaction from him.”

Oct 25, 2018 6:03 pm (IST)

Gandhi said that it was illegal for the CBI chief to be removed, and the charge be given to a new man. “The new man who has been given charge will be controlled by the PM,” he further alleged.

Oct 25, 2018 5:59 pm (IST)

The Congress chief went on to say that the CBI director cannot be removed by the Prime Minister of India.  He alleged that the PM was involved in corruption over the Rafale deal. He added that the PM took the decision out of fear as he was involved in corruption over the Rafale deal. 

Oct 25, 2018 5:56 pm (IST)

The entire country knew that an investigation was about to be launched into the Rafale deal and so the director was removed.

Oct 25, 2018 5:55 pm (IST)

“Prime Minister removing the CBI chief at 2 am is an insult to the Constitution of India, the Chief Justice of India, the Leader of Opposition and the people of India," says Rahul Gandhi. 

Oct 25, 2018 5:53 pm (IST)

Congress President Rahul Gandhi is addressing the media about the controversy surrounding the CBI.

Oct 25, 2018 5:48 pm (IST)

Delhi Court Extends Custody of Middleman in Bribery Case Against Asthana | A Delhi court on Thursday extended by five days the CBI custody of Manoj Prasad, arrested in connection with bribery allegations involving the agency's Special Director Rakesh Asthana, PTI reported. Special CBI judge Santosh Snehi Mann allowed the plea of the agency after it sought custodial interrogation of middleman Prasad. The CBI had registered an FIR against Asthana and his Deputy Superintendent of Police Devender Kumar lodged on a written complaint of businessman Sathish Sana. Besides Asthana and Kumar, middlemen Prasad and Somesh Prasad have also been named as accused in the case.

Oct 25, 2018 5:35 pm (IST)

Alok Verma remains CBI Director, Rakesh Asthana Special Director, M Nageshwar Rao looking after duties of director: CBI spokesperson: 

Oct 25, 2018 5:23 pm (IST)

A CBI spokesperson has denied reports of preliminary enquiry (PE) being conducted by exiled CBI director Alok Verma into the Rafale deal. The CBI spokesperson said that false media reports are being manufactured for some vested purposes. He added that every document or file in CBI is accounted for at each level.

Oct 25, 2018 2:14 pm (IST)

The Congress on Wednesday had attacked Prime Minister Narendra Modi accusing him of "a desperate cover-up attempt" over the Rafale deal and pushing the country's premier probe agency, the CBI, into complete disarray.  Congress President Rahul Gandhi had tweeted: "The Prime Minister's message is very clear that whoever comes around Rafale — will be removed, wiped out." ​

Oct 25, 2018 2:01 pm (IST)

"They were perhaps dreaming of Rafale scam and of their friends who have escaped the country with loans. That’s why they took this decision overnight. They didn’t even consult us as a courtesy," Leader of Opposition (LoP) Mallikarjun Kharge said over CBI vs CBI row.

Oct 25, 2018 1:56 pm (IST)

"Today morning, an attempt was made by this government to drag Intelligence Bureau into this mess. It has already dragged CBI and CVC into its dirty tricks. We condemn this," Congress' Abhishek Manu Singhvi said on the Alok Verma ouster row.

Oct 25, 2018 1:26 pm (IST)

"It is true that CVC has the right to supervise but he doesn’t have the right to transfer or remove the director. Section 4(A) and 4(B) clearly state how committee constitutes or transfers director. They didn’t even consult us as a courtesy and took this decision overnight. Perhaps, they couldn't sleep," Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge said after CBI top boss Alok Verma was removed from post.

Oct 25, 2018 1:21 pm (IST)

Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge said that a committee selects a CBI director and hence, a meeting should have been called to take action against him. "But by just referring to a special director's letter and by pressuring CVC, the CBI chief was removed," he said, adding that it was a 'shameful attack'.

Oct 25, 2018 1:14 pm (IST)

The Congress on Thursday attacked the Centre after four 'suspected' Intelligence Bureau men were nabbed from outside the residence of Alok Verma, the CBI director who was sent on leave a day ago, saying the 'IB is heading the CBI way'. "After making CBI as 'Central Burial of Investigation', the (Narendra) Modi government now stoops to a 'new low' -- Snooping on 'forcibly removed' CBI Director through IB," Congress spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala said. "Let everyone be forewarned — IB is heading the CBI way!" Surjewala tweeted. According to sources, the four 'suspected' IB men were nabbed by Verma's personal security guards on Thursday. 

Oct 25, 2018 1:11 pm (IST)

A late-night order on Tuesday from the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi sent Verma and Special Director Rakesh Asthana, who were at loggerheads, on leave. Besides sending Verma and Asthana on leave, the government also transferred several CBI officials and appointed M Nageswar Rao as the interim chief of the agency. Verma moved the Supreme Court Wednesday challenging the government's decision after which it agreed to hear his plea on Friday.

Oct 25, 2018 1:05 pm (IST)

Reacting to the CBI vs CBI row, BJP MP Subramanian Swamy expressed apprehensions that the BJP government may try and protect P Chidambaram. "A gang of four persons is working against PM Modi. Our party's image is being hurt. Nirav Modi, Choksi and Mallya escaped. How can we fight against corruption if this continues? I am still supporter of PM. He is still the best. But his aides are working against him," he said.

Oct 25, 2018 12:54 pm (IST)

The bench, which also comprised Justices S K Kaul and K M Joseph, asked Bhushan to provide details and said it would consider granting urgent hearing on the petition. The NGO has sought relief including court-monitored Special Investigation Team (SIT) probe into allegations of corruption against CBI officials including Asthana, who along with CBI Director Alok Kumar Verma had been divested of powers and sent on leave.

Oct 25, 2018 12:53 pm (IST)

"There was no attempt to snoop outside CBI director's residence. Janpath Road is a high profile zone and often Intelligence Bureau officials carry out routine duty. But their presence was shown in an unfortunate manner," Intelligence Bureau officials said after four people were arrested outside Alok Verma's residence earlier this morning.

Oct 25, 2018 12:40 pm (IST)

The Supreme Court on Thursday said that it would consider according urgent hearing to a PIL seeking court-monitored SIT probe into allegations of corruption against various CBI officials, including Rakesh Asthana, who was divested of his responsibilities as the agency's special director. A bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi considered the submission of lawyer Prashant Bhushan, appearing for NGO 'Common Cause' that there were wider issues of corruption affecting the probe agency and the PIL needed to be heard urgently.

Oct 25, 2018 12:36 pm (IST)

In the wake of the unprecedented internal feud between CBI Director and Rakesh Asthana, the security outside the CBI headquarters in New Delhi was beefed up. The infighting in the agency had reached the top court on Wednesday which agreed to hear on 26 October the former's plea assailing the Centre's decision to divest him of duties and sending him on leave. 

Oct 25, 2018 12:20 pm (IST)

Meanwhile, Congress said that it protest against the ‘unconstitutional misuse of CBI by the government' on Friday. Congress said that it will demand reinstatement of CBI director Alok Verma, who has been ‘illegally replaced’. All party secretaries in-charge, PCC chiefs, MPs have been asked to lead protests in their respective regions. In Delhi, Ajay Maken will lead the agitation at 11am tomorrow from Deen Dayal Upadhyay College.

Oct 25, 2018 12:15 pm (IST)

After four people were arrested for suspiciously snooping around the residence of exiled CBI chief Alok Verma, Intelligence Bureau said that its officials are regularly deployed in high security areas to collect intelligence data. It said that the local law and order agencies were also kept in loop but their presence were portrayed in an 'unfortunate matter'.

Oct 25, 2018 12:10 pm (IST)

The incident comes just a day after Verma was divested of all charges following an unprecedented feud with agency's special director Rakesh Asthana. The two men have been sent on leave and an interim director, M Nageshwar Rao, has been made to take charge with immediate effect. Calling the government’s action an “illegal interference,” Verma said it “not only erodes the independence of the institution but also the morale of its officers.”

Oct 25, 2018 12:09 pm (IST)

Congress spokesperson Randeep Surjewala alleged that the Centre is now 'snooping' on CBI Director through the IB.

Oct 25, 2018 12:06 pm (IST)

Four men are being questioned by the Delhi Police for suspiciously snooping around the residence of exiled CBI chief Alok Verma. The men have been identified as Dhiraj Kumar, Ajay Kumar, Prashant and Vineet Kumar Gupta. The men say that they are from the Intelligence Bureau. The men were subsequently handed over to the police.

CBI vs CBI LIVE: PM Modi Panicked Over Rafale Deal Probe and Removed Alok Verma, Says Rahul Gandhi
File photo of Congress president Rahul Gandhi (PTI photo)

The CBI, on the other hand, has denied reports that Verma had ordered a preliminary inquiry into the Rafale deal, which has been used by the opposition to target the Narendra Modi government. An agency spokesperson said "false media reports are being manufactured for some vested purposes". Every document and file in CBI is accounted for at each level, the spokesperson added.

The Indian Express had received a 132-page complaint against alleged irregularities in the Rafale fighter deal with France and had ordered an inquiry when he was shunted out after the internal war with his second-in-command Rakesh Asthana. The opposition, led by Congress chief Rahul Gandhi, has alleged that Verma was removed in the middle of the night because he was scared the agency was about to start probing the Rafale deal.

Reacting on the CBI vs CBI row, Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge on Thursday also slammed the government for its 'overnight decision' and said that he has written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi over the issue.

"They were perhaps dreaming of Rafale scam and of their friends who have escaped the country with loans. That's why they took this decision overnight," the senior Congress leader said during a press conference. Earlier in the day, Congress had attacked the Centre after four 'suspected' Intelligence Bureau men were nabbed from outside the residence of Alok Verma, the CBI director who was sent on leave a day ago, saying the 'IB is heading the CBI way'.

The men were intercepted sitting in two cars waiting outside Verma's CBI House residence on Janpath since late on Wednesday. They have been identified as Dhiraj Kumar, Ajay Kumar, Prashant and Vineet Kumar Gupta. The men say that they are from the Intelligence Bureau. The men were subsequently handed over to the police.

Congress spokesperson Randeep Surjewala alleged that the Centre is now 'snooping' on CBI Director through the IB.




The incident comes just a day after Verma was divested of all charges following an unprecedented feud with agency's special director Rakesh Asthana. The two men have been sent on leave and an interim director, M Nageshwar Rao, has been made to take charge with immediate effect.

Calling the government’s action an “illegal interference,” Verma said it “not only erodes the independence of the institution but also the morale of its officers.”


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