Lokpal: CBI may oppose its division before Parl Panel

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New Delhi, Sep 22: CBI is likely to oppose any division in the organisation and demand complete functional autonomy and superintendence by the proposed Lokpal when its Chief A P Singh appears before the Parliamentary Standing Committee looking into the issue on Saturday.

Singh, whose previous appearance before the Committee was deferred, is likely to give a detailed presentation about the views of the agency on the relationship with the proposed anti-corruption body, sources said.

He is likely to convey to the Parliamentary panel the agency's view that it should be retained in its present form as "the only premier investigating agency for corruption cases" while the Lokpal can be given all such powers because of which "interference is said to be caused" in its functioning, official sources said.

"The underlying theme in both the draft Lokpal bills is to confer more autonomy on the investigation agency so as to insulate it from interference. This kind of autonomy and independence can be given to the CBI by conferring Lokpal with all such powers because of which interference is said to be caused in functioning of CBI," a senior official said.

Singh may seek a working relationship with Lokpal on the lines of CVC and CBI like "superintendence at an arm's length" with the proposed anti-corruption watchdog being vested "with all powers to meet the financial, administrative and legal requirements of CBI," he said.

The Director has consulted senior officials of the agency and come to the conclusion that "the Director, CBI should continue to exercise the final police powers to decide a case.

"The Lokpal could instead have an enquiry wing under it for conducting fact-finding enquiries in matters that it may deem fit and entrust investigation to CBI, if it so warrants," the official said.

PTI

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