Case Description

The Supreme Court is assessing if the Centre violated the law when it divested Mr. Alok Verma, the CBI Director of his powers.

Background

Two petitions, one filed by Alok Verma (CBI Director) and one by the NGO Common Cause have challenged the Centre's order which divested Director Verma of his powers. The petitioners argue that the Central Government’s actions against Verma violate the provisions of the DSPE (Delhi Special Police Establishment) Act and the Supreme Court guidelines issued in Vineet Narain, 1997.

 

The petitions also demands the removal of CBI Special Director Mr. Rakesh Asthana, in light of the pending corruption charges  against him.

 

Common Cause also requests a court monitored Special Investigation Team (SIT) to probe “into charges of corruption against the officials of the CBI”.

 

Common Cause filed the petition in response to the Central government divesting Director Alok Verma of his powers and appointing M. Nageswara Rao as the interim chief of the CBI. The Central government appointed an interim chief to put an end to the highly publicised in-fighting between Alok Verma and Rakesh Asthana.

 

Verma and Asthana were both placed on immediate leave on 23rd October 2018, a first in the history of the CBI.

Issues

1) Did the action taken against CBI Director Verma violate the provisions of the Delhi Special Police Establishment (DSPE) Act?

2) Did the action against CBI Director violate the rule of fixed tenure, which was introduced by the SC guidelines in Vineet Narain case?

3) Did the authority of Central Vigilance Commissioner (CVC) under CVC Act extend to investigation against CBI personnels or is restricted to supervision over ongoing CBI cases?

4) Do the Central Vigilance Commission's powers of supervision extend to investigating charges against CBI personnels, under the CVC Act, 2003?

Judges