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Government Sent Alok Verma & Asthana On Compulsory Leave On Advice Of The CVC, Says Arun Jaitley

HARSH RANJAN | 0
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| January 8 , 2019 , 16:09 IST

Finance minister Arun Jaitley on Tuesday appreciated government's decision of sending the CBI's two senior officers Alok Verma and his deputy Rakesh Asthana on compulsory leave on the recommendation of the Central Vigilance Commission.

Speaking to media, after the Supreme Court gave orders to reinstate CBI director Alok Verma, Jaitley said the government would comply with the orders of the apex court.

"The government took this decision to protect the integrity of the CBI. The government took the action of sending two senior officers of CBI on leave on CVC's recommendation," he added.

Jaitley further said, "The court apparently has strengthened the immunity given to the CBI director in the larger interest of the fair and impartial working of the CBI. At the same time, the court has devised an accountability mechanism. The directions of the court will obviously be complied with."

The Supreme Court reinstated Verma, setting aside the Centre's decision to divest him of his powers, but restrained him from taking any major policy decision till the CVC probe into corruption charges against him is over.

The apex court said any further decision against Verma, who was sent on leave following the Centre's October 23 decision and retires on January 31, would be taken by the high-powered committee which selects and appoints the CBI director.

Reacting over the top court's decision, Congress said, "We welcome the Supreme Court's verdict lambasting the government against their illegal removal of Alok Verma as CBI Director," which alleges that Mr Verma was removed because he intended to launch a probe into the Rafale jet deal.

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Mr Verma and Rakesh Asthana, the CBI's top two officers, were both sent on leave in October in the middle of a bitter feud between them. Around 2 am on October 24, Nageswar Rao took charge and signed off on the transfer of half-a-dozen officers on Mr Verma's team.