New Delhi, January 7: The Supreme Court will pronounce its verdict tomorrow, January 8 on petitions filed by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) Director Alok Verma and NGO Common Cause challenging the Central government’s decision to send him on leave and divesting him of all responsibilities. In December last year, during the hearing of the case Attorney-General KK Venugopal told the apex court that Verma and CBI Special Director Rakesh Asthana were fighting like cats, adding that the government's intervention was necessary to restore public confidence in the organisation.
The top court also asked the Attorney-General if there was any evidence that suggests Verma was going public about ongoing infighting in the CBI. Venugopal then submitted clippings of some newspaper reports to back the government's claim. He admitted the clash between Verma and Asthana was tarnishing the image of the premier investigative agency. CBI Registered 206 Corruption Cases Against Central Government Employees in 2018.
However, in the hearing on December 6, the top court came down heavily on the Narendra Modi government over the CBI vs CBI dispute calling the government's decision to divest CBI Director Alok Verma of his powers 'unfair'. The Chief Justice also asked as to why the government didn't wait for Verma's retirement which was due soon. However, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta told the Supreme Court that the CVC had come to the conclusion that an "extraordinary situation had arisen and that extraordinary situations sometimes need extraordinary remedies."
Meanwhile, the Delhi High Court on December 18, granted bail to Manoj Prasad, an alleged middleman arrested in connection with the case. Special CBI judge Santosh Snehi Mann granted bail to Prasad saying that no purpose will be served by keeping him in further custody.