CBI officers who were transferred overnight to various places after the Centre's decision to divest the probe agency's Director Alok Kumar Verma of his powers, failed to get any relief from the Supreme Court on Tuesday which asked them to approach appropriate forum assailing their transfers.
Soon after taking over the role of CBI director, M Nageswara Rao, a 1986-batch IPS officer from Odisha cadre, transferred over many officers, including M K Sinha and A K Bassi who were who were probing special Director Rakesh Asthana in an alleged bribery case.
Verma, who was divested of his powers and sent on leave on October 23 by the Central Vigilance Commission and the Department of Personnel and Traning (DoPT), had moved the apex court challenging the decision.
A bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi allowed Verma to come back as the CBI Director, albeit with his wings clipped, and gave a jolt to the Centre and the CVC by setting aside their orders divesting him of his powers and sending him on leave.
CBI officers including DIG M K Sinha, a 2000 batch IPS officer from Andhra Pradesh cadre and Dy SP A K Bassi, who were transferred to Nagpur and Andaman and Nicobar Islands respectively, had filed separate interim applications in the pending plea of Verma against their overnight transfers.
The apex court said it had dealt with the legality of the orders of the Centre and the CVC divesting Verma of his powers and appointing Rao as the interim CBI Director and would not go into the consequential transfer orders.
"Coming to the several IAs (interim applications) filed, we are of the view that the orders of transfer etc impugned/mentioned in the said IAs are a sequel of the three ordersdated23rdOctober,2018which were specifically impugned inthewritpetitions.Aswehave answered thewritpetitionsinthemanner...,
"Wedo not considerit necessary to examine the correctness of the further/consequential orders of transfer etc. and thattooonthe basis of interlocutory applications filed in pending writ petitions underArticle32oftheConstitution."
The apex court, however said that it was for the transferred CBI officers to challenge the consequential transfer orders in "an appropriate manner and before the appropriate forum".
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