New Delhi, July 5: Will the spat between the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and Intelligence Bureau (IB) over the Ishrat Jahan case will have a serious impact on the country's security apparatus?
According to a report published in Economic Times, the IB has complained to the home ministry against the CBI, accusing the latter of targetting its officials over the nine-year-old case. IB chief Asif Ibrahim, while making the formal complaint, said it was proving to be disastrous for the IB officials' morale and could pose a serious threat to the country's internal security.
Ibrahim, it is learnt, put on record his objection to the CBI probe into the case by writing to former home secretary R K Singh. He had even complained to National Security Advisor Shiv Shankar Menon for it was the latter who had advised Singh to intervene and call a meeting between Ibrahim and CBI Director Ranjit Sinha on June 13 to discuss the proof that the CBI had against IB Special Director Rajinder Kumar.
According to government sources, Singh asked Ibrahim to put his disapproval on record after the CBI refused to act after the meeting, the report said.
Ibrahim stressed the importance for granting some immunity to personnel of a covert intelligence body and also warned that the CBI's targetting IB officials could seriously hamper counter-terror operations and the internal security situation, the report highlighted.
The home ministry has tried to play it so far as Union Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde said on Thursday that the guilty would be punished for facts are always right.
Former IB officers also stressed the importance of protecting the IB as an institution. The CBI was criticised for putting everything on record and not caring for the IB's image.
The CBI, in its defence, said it was only doing its job to probe the fake encounter of Ishrat Jahan and others and exposed the evil elements in the IB. It advised the IB to learn from the experience and correct its operational ways instead of accusing the CBI. It also cited examples of arresting its own members on charges of corruption and said those action had never affected its morale.