PM-led panel likely to select CBI chief today

RSTV Bureau
FILE: File photo of PM Narendra Modi in a meeting at PMO. Photo - PTI

FILE: File photo of PM Narendra Modi in a meeting at PMO.
Photo – PTI

A three-member committee headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi is slated to meet on Monday to decide on the chief of the country’s premier probe agency CBI. The selection committee has Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge and Chief Justice of India JS Khehar or his nominee as its other members.

The post of CBI director is lying vacant for over one month following Anil Sinha’s retirement on December 2.

Currently, Gujarat-cadre IPS officer Rakesh Asthana is holding the position of the interim director of the investigating agency. Asthana’s appointment to the position of interim chief was questioned by the Congress party with its Lok Sabha leader Kharge even writing to the Prime Minister.

Congress leader in Lok Sabha, Mallikarjun Kharge.

Congress leader in Lok Sabha, Mallikarjun Kharge.

The matter had also reached Supreme Court after an NGO moved plea challenging the government move. Apprising the top court, the government counsel had assured that a decision will be arrived at soon as the PM-led panel was due to meet.

A list of about 45 eligible IPS officers has been sent to the Prime Minister’s Office for consideration as next CBI director, according to the official sources.

The name of senior IPS officers Krishna Choudhary, Aruna Bahuguna and SC Mathur, among others are doing the rounds as strong contenders for the top post, they said. The names also included current Delhi police top cop Alok Kumar Verma.

Choudhary and Bahuguna are 1979 batch IPS officers of Bihar and Telangana cadre respectively. Chaudhary is Director General of Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) force and Bahuguna is Director of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel National Police Academy, Hyderabad.

Mathur, a 1981 batch IPS officer of Maharashtra cadre, is working with Maharashtra State Police Housing and Welfare Corporation Ltd.

(With inputs from the PTI)