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984 of 2016
PIL challenging appointment of Director CBI
Challenging the ad-hocism in the appointment and functioning of the CBI Director: WP No. 984/2016
Even though the Central Government was fully aware that the Director CBI, Mr. Anil Sinha, was demitting office on December 2, 2016, it failed to convene a meeting of the selection committee for selecting the new director of the CBI. In order to safeguard the independence of the CBI against executive interventions, a detailed procedure has been laid down in Section 4A of the Delhi Special Police Establishment Act, 1946, as amended by the Lokpal and Lokayuktas Act, 2013. Through a series of omissions and commissions, central government chose to ignore the mechanism put in place to insulate the functioning of the CBI Director from undue executive influence. Common Cause filed a PIL in the SC praying for issuance of appropriate writ directing the Union of India to appoint a regular Director of CBI as per procedure established by law and for quashing the appointment of Interim/Acting Director of the CBI. Notice was issued on December 12, 2016 and on December 16, 2016 the AG submitted that the procedure laid down under Section 4C of the Delhi Special Police Establishment Act, 1946 had been followed in the case of transfer of Mr. Dutta, (the 2nd senior most officer in the CBI). It further submitted that the process of appointment of regular Director to the CBI had been commenced and that the first meeting of the Committee was to take place in the last week of December, 2016. The SC directed the matter to be listed on January 17, 2017. Meanwhile, a meeting of the Selection Panel was slated to be held on January 4, 2017, as per news reports.