The Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) and the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Saturday opposed Anna Hazare team's proposal of bringing them under the control of the proposed anti-graft Lokpal, but favoured the idea of making their chiefs the members of this watchdog.
In their presentations before the parliamentary standing committee on law and justice, which is currently examining the Lokpal bill, CVC Pradeep Kumar and CBI director AP Singh, argued for maintaining their respective organisational structures.
Kumar and Singh, both were of the view that the chiefs of the CVC and the CBI should be made members of the Lokpal "for better functioning of the anti-graft watchdog and its coordination with the two organisations."
The CVC and the CBI chief, both, told the parliamentary panel that that CBI should be conferred with more administrative and functional autonomy.
As reported first by HT, Kumar said the CVC should be allowed to maintain its jurisdiction over higher bureaucracy. "For effective superintendence over vigilance administration, the existing structure should not be disturbed," he told the panel.
The Jan Lokpal bill drafted by Hazare and his team proposed bringing the CVC and the anti-corruption wing of the CBI to be brought under the Lokpal's control. They had pointed out that unless the CVC is given more powers and the CBI is made free from the government's control, these organisations would not be able to deal with corruption effectively.
The CBI director, however, termed this proposal as "retrograde", saying it would "cripple" the country's premier investigating agency.
He is understood to have told the panel that in case the CBI's anti-corruption unit is brought under the Lokpal, it would be ineffective without the agency's support units. Singh favoured empowering the Lokpal with "general superintendence" on anti-corruption matters being looked into by the CBI and also be given powers to meet financial, administrative and legal requirements of the agency.