Railway minister Pawan Kumar Bansal becomes the second minister within a month after law minister Ashwani Kumar to have come in the CBI's firing line, indicating a new approach in the investigating agency aimed at asserting its independence.
At a time when the CBI faced a volley of questions from the Supreme Court on its functioning, particularly in cases involving top political personalities, the agency in a swift action booked the railway minister's nephew.
"We are just doing our job," said a CBI official on the condition of anonymity.
Earlier, the CBI director Ranjit Sinha told the Supreme Court that he shared contents of a status report on the probe into the coal block allocation scam with Kumar 'as desired' by him.
His confession before the court was embarrassing for the government but the CBI director was unfazed.
"I cannot lie to the court. The court can send me to jail for contempt of the court," Sinha was learnt to have commented when asked about the contents of affidavit he would be filing in the apex court on his meeting with the law minister.
"From the beginning the agency is investigating the high and mighty of the country. Earlier also, we have investigated ministers and their relatives. The agency has done wonders whenever it has been allowed to do its job," said the official.
But another CBI official told HT that earlier also the agency has started investigations in the high profile cases, such as the Bofors scam and the JMM bribery case, with much fanfare but later the cases just fizzled out in the court.