‘CBI has become BJP bureau of investigation’: Oppn tears into Centre
Attacking the BJP, Congress spokesperson Randeep Surjewala wondered if Alok Verma was “sacked” for his keenness to probe the “layers of corruption” in the Rafale scam and sought an answer from Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The opposition on Wednesday tore into the Narendra Modi government over the removal of CBI officers, including its director Alok verma, with the Congress accusing it of trying to cover up probe into Rafale scam and Mamata Banerjee saying the CBI had become “BJP bureau of investigation”.
In a late night move at 2.30 am on Wednesday, the government divested Alok Verma of all responsibilities following a feud with his deputy, Rakesh Asthana. Verma had late on Tuesday had stripped Asthana of all charges after CBI filed a bribery case against him.
Joint director M Nageswar Rao, who took over as acting chief, in his first order, removed the entire team probing the bribery case against Asthana, including Ajay Bassi, the investigation officer (IO) and deputy inspector general Manish Sinha.
Reacting to the move, Congress’s chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala in a series of tweets, wondered if Verma was “sacked” for his keenness to probe the “layers of corruption” in the Rafale scam and sought an answer from Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
“Has the CBI Director been sacked for his keenness to probe the layers of corruption in Rafale Scam? Isn’t the rest a shoddy cover up? Let PM answer!” the Congress leader said.
Atccusing the Modi government of trying to “tamper fair investigation of serious criminal cases”, he said it had buried the last nail into the independence of the premier investigating agency.
“Modi govt buries the ‘last nail’ into the independence of CBI. Systematic dismantling & denigrating of CBI is now complete. Once a premier investigating agency, PM ensures that CBI’s integrity, credibility & reliability is buried & dead,” Surjewala said on Twitter.Hitting out at the BJP, West Bengal chief minister and Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee, in a tweet, said, “CBI has now become so called BBI ( BJP Bureau of Investigation ) – very unfortunate!”
Finance minister Arun Jaitley rubbished the opposition charges, saying the two officers (Verma and Asthana) were sent on leave to maintain integrity of probe, which would be done by the Central Vigilance Commission (CVC), and not the government.
Jaitley said the government was committed to preserve the integrity of India’s administrative system and the credibility of CBI.
Earlier, CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury also had criticised the removal of Verma, saying it pointed to attempts to “protect government’s handpicked officer” with direct links to the BJP’s top political leadership, news agency PTI reported.
Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal also slammed the government on the move.