Former Maharashtra director general of police Subodh Kumar Jaiswal was on Tuesday appointed the new director for the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI). The decision was taken during a high-powered committee led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and comprising Chief Justice of India NV Ramana and Congress Lok Sabha floor leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury.
He has been appointed as the director of CBI for a period of two years, the ministry order said. Jaiswal is a 1985-batch IPS officer of Maharashtra cadre, and is currently serving as the chief of CISF. He has earlier held the positions of Mumbai police commissioner and the Maharashtra DGP. He has also held central posts, and has had long stints in the Intelligence Bureau and the Research and Analysis Wing (RAW).
The Central Bureau of Investigation was working without a regular chief for over three months after Rishi Kumar Shukla completed his two-year tenure on February 3. CBI Additional Director Praveen Sinha, a 1988-batch IPS officer of Gujarat cadre, was appointed the acting chief of the agency after Shukla completed his tenure.
The meeting of the high-powered committee, comprising Prime Minister Modi, Chief Justice of India NV Ramana and Leader of Opposition in Lok Sabha Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, started around 6:30 pm at the 7, Lok Kalyan Marg, official residence of the Prime Minister, the sources said. During the 90-minute meeting, Chowdhury objected to the process of selection of officers for the coveted post of CBI director.
“The way the procedure was followed, it was in conflict with the mandate of the committee. On 11th (May), I was given 109 names and today (Monday) by 1 pm, 10 names were shortlisted and by 4 pm, six names were shortlisted. This casual approach of DoPT (department of personnel and training) is highly objectionable," Chowdhury had told PTI. The appointment assumes significance as the Supreme Court is hearing a petition filed by an NGO, Common Cause, on the delay in the appointment of a regular CBI chief. The Centre had last month told the Supreme Court that the meeting of the selection committee for the appointment of the CBI director would be convened immediately after May 2.
On April 5, the apex court had asked the Centre to consider convening the meeting before May 2 observing that “in-charge arrangements" for the post cannot go on. The petitioner has alleged that the government has failed to appoint a regular CBI director as per Section 4A of the Delhi Special Police Establishment (DSPE) Act.
The plea has also sought a direction to the Centre to initiate and complete the process of selection of the CBI director well in advance, at least one to two months before the date on which the vacancy to the post is about to occur.