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CBI Infighting: Is it related to State Assembly elections?

Arti Ghargi

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A premier investigating agency of world’s largest democracy entangled with an ugly, out-in-public fight between the two topmost officials, both trying to discredit each other while the leadership looks over- seems like a perfect flimsy story. The fact is, it is happening right now in India’s leading investigative agency Central Bureau of the investigation. The public fallout between the No.1 of CBI i.e. CBI director Alok Verma and No.2 i.e. Special Director Rakesh Asthana has now reached to a point where the agency seems to be having an unprecedented face-off. This CBI vs CBI infight reached its zenith when the agency filed an FIR against its own Special Director Rakesh Asthana and even raided its own officer in connection with the case.
Rakesh Asthana however, levelled same charges of corruption and misconduct against the CBI director Alok Verma. Asthana even said that there is a conspiracy being hatched to malign him. Rakesh Asthana’s first shot to fame came with the arrest of former Bihar CM Lalu Prasad Yadav in the fodder scam. Asthana was only 36 when he sent Lalu Yadav, the then CM of Bihar to jail in the fodder scam case. After this, he was considered one of the boldest officers on the block. He also handled Asaram Case and 2008 Ahmedabad blast case.
But as much as he is hailed for his cases, there is his share of controversies too. He was named in the infamous 2011 diary scandal. He has several accusations of bribery on him. However, the most consistent allegation on him is being a pawn at the hands of PM Modi and Shah since his Gujarat days. He was part of the Supreme Court-monitored SIT which gave Narendra Modi clean chit in the Godhra kaand. Since then, he is said to be close to the duo. His appointment as the Special director of CBI despite the opposition from Alok Verma is also said to be because of his proximity to the Prime Minister.
The CBI vs CBI fight is no more internal. The PMO stepped in but it is already too late. The ugly side of the bureaucracy tainted by political infiltration is for all to see. It is not that the previous government didn’t play with the CBI. Indeed, Supreme Court once called it a caged parrot.
But for this unprecedented case, the dots are in front of us, how to connect them to see the larger picture is up to all of us.

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CBI vs. CBI: No clean chit to Alok Verma, but SC seeks his reply

Smita Sahu

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No clean chit has been given by the Chief Vigilance Commission (CVC) to CBI Director Alok Verma, as the CVC gets more time from the Supreme Court to probe the case further on 16 November. The apex court has also asked Verma to file a report on the matter, which will be done so on Monday.

Verma had filed a plea challenging the government’s order divesting him of his duties and sending him on leave in view of allegations of corruption against him.

The top court had adjourned the hearing on Monday, 12 November, after the Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) delayed to submit their inquiry report on Verma. The report was submitted in a sealed cover on Monday morning to the three-judge bench, headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi.

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59-min loan or 59-minute scam?

Sujit Nair

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With PM Modi’s 59-minute loan out in the open, there is a processing fee that is charged. But that’s not it. There’s more involved to the kind of mismanagement that went on in the whole process. Mr. Sujit Nair, Managing Editor of HW News Network and Mr. Akhilesh Bhargava Business Editor of HW Business and Finance share their insights on the matter.

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Justice Chelameswar goes all out on dissent in democracy and the current discourse on RBI Vs CBI

Anusha Bhattacharya

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In a press conference Justice (retired) Chelameswar said that “”Some amount of manipulation was definitely going on. A couple of cases were withdrawn from some of us. Overnight the matters got disappeared from one bench and appeared on another bench. You can draw whatever inference you want but it can be a possible inference. Inferences can be drawn that these set of judges were not very nice and we can talk about this, but certainly these are questions one needs to answer. Who was the person who the cases withdrawn”

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