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Delay in CBI selection panel meet may rule out senior officer

Rina Mitra, a special secretary (internal security) in the Union home ministry, will be out of contention for the top job at the CBI if the selection committee does not meet in the next two days as she is set to retire on January 31, people familiar with the development said.

india Updated: Jan 30, 2019 08:57 IST
Aurangzeb Naqshbandi and Rajesh Ahuja
Aurangzeb Naqshbandi and Rajesh Ahuja
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
CBI,Home ministry,Rina Mitra
Rina Mitra, a special secretary (internal security) in the Union home ministry, will be out of contention for the top job at the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) if the selection committee does not meet in the next two days as she is set to retire on January 31. (Bandaru Dattatreya/Twitter)

Rina Mitra, a special secretary (internal security) in the Union home ministry, will be out of contention for the top job at the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) if the selection committee does not meet in the next two days as she is set to retire on January 31, people familiar with the development said.

Mitra is a Madhya Pradesh-cadre Indian Police Service officer (IPS) of the 1983 batch, on central deputation. She has worked in the CBI for five years, a key consideration for the post of the agency’s director.

There are 11 officers who have worked in CBI earlier and belong to the top four IPS batches — 1982, 1983, 1984 and 1985. This is the consideration set for the top job at CBI and Mitra is right on top on account of her seniority.

The remaining ten officers who have worked in the federal investigation agency are (in order of seniority): Rajni Kant Mishra, an Uttar Pradesh cadre officer and presently the Border Security Force (BSF) chief, Javeed Ahmad, a cadre mate of Mishra and chief of the National Institute of Criminology and Forensic Science in Delhi, Rakesh Asthana, who heads the Bureau of Civil Aviation Security, SS Deswal, chief of the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP), VK Johri, special secretary in the Research and Analysis Wing (R&AW), YC Modi, head of the National Investigation Agency (NIA), Rajesh Ranjan, director general of the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) (all from 1984 batch), HC Awasthi, head of vigilance in Uttar Pradesh, OP Galhotra, former chief of Rajasthan police and Arun Kumar, director general of the Railway Protection Force (RPF) (all from the 1985 batch).

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Two other officers in contention — Parminder Rai (1982 batch Haryana cadre) and Tirth Raj (1984 batch Gujarat cadre) — will also retire by the end of January. The selection panel meeting last week remained inclusive after Congress leader in the Lok Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge insisted on receiving detailed background information on the shortlisted officers.

Kharge wanted to know details of the seniority, integrity, and investigation and anti-corruption work done by the shortlisted officers before discussing their names in the selection panel, comprising, apart from him, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and chief justice of India Ranjan Gogoi. In the absence of such details, Kharge maintained that the panel could not take a final call on the next CBI director.

The government prepared two annexures of 19 and 60 names respectively and presented this to the panel. The government is in the process of finalising the date of the next meeting.

First Published: Jan 30, 2019 07:26 IST

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