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CBI needs autonomy to nail down Chautalas: Joginder Singh

Written by: Staff

Varanasi, May 6 (UNI) Claiming there were countless 'Chautalas' in the country, former CBI director Joginder Singh today said only real autonomy to the premier investigation agency could help in bringing tainted people's representatives to justice.

''The countless tainted politicians and bureaucrats can be brought to justice only if CBI is provided with total autonomy, which remains a distant dream,'' Mr Singh told newspersons after addressing students at a local school.

''The CBI can tackle a maximum of 1,200 cases yearly, but owing to consistent political interference and lack of power, besides slow judicial process in the country, it is facing difficulties in discharging duties, he noted'' For speedy disposal of cases by CBI, the reform of the criminal justices justice system is paramount. ''A total of 12,500 judges are hearing about 3.32 crore cases, which is tall task. Urgent reforms are needed in judiciary, prosecution and police, to help the CBI work effectively,'' Mr Singh maintained.

On the issue of political interference in CBI functioning, the former CBI Chief claimed it was ''too much'', especially coming from the Prime Minister's Office. He, however, declined to reply when asked if the PMO pressurised him during his tenure in top chair of CBI.

On ''allurement'' that were offered to CBI directors for ''bending rules,'' he said they were usually offered gubernatorial postings or assignments of amdassadors/ high commissioners, but did not answer when asked if he had received such offers during his directorship.

Demanding more powers to CBI directors, Mr Singh said the top man in the CBI was even deprived of power to directly rectruit personnel in the central agency.

''How can an agency be termed as premier, whose boss is deprived of requisite powers,'' Mr Singh lamented.

Queried if he harboured any political ambitions, he quipped, ''I am an unpopular figure with political parties...no one will approach me with political offers. Let them come first and then I will think over it.'' UNI ARS VS VD KN2038

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