Exiled CBI chief Alok Verma was reinstated by the Supreme Court today, three months after the government divested him of his powers and sent him on forced leave in a midnight swoop. Alok Verma can go back to his office but cannot take any major policy decisions for now, the top court said, asking a high-powered selection committee comprising the Prime Minister, the Leader of Opposition and the Chief Justice of India to meet and decide on his status within a week.
The judgement was penned by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi. However, the CJI didn't attend court and it was pronounced by Justices SK Kaul and KM Joseph. The apex court also set aside the Centre's decision to appoint senior IPS officer M Nageswara Rao, who was joint director, as the agency's interim chief.
Noting the history of the CBI, the Supreme Court noted that the CBI, which was initially governed by the Police Act, 1861 made the provision, 'The superintendence of the police throughout a general police district shall vest in and shall be exercised by the State Government to which such district is subordinate; and except as authorised under the provisions of this Act, no person, officer, or court shall be empowered by the state government to supersede, or control any police functionary.'