Con­flict­ing claims emerge over Alok Verma’s re­moval

DNA Sunday (Mumbai) - - INDI - DNA Cor­re­spon­dent

New Delhi: Two days after Alok Ku­mar Verma was re­moved from the post of Cen­tral Bureau of In­ves­ti­ga­tion (CBI) Di­rec­tor, two top judges re­lated to the in­ves­ti­ga­tion against Verma have re­port­edly given con­trary views.

Serv­ing Supreme Court judge Jus­tice AK Sikri, rep­re­sen­ta­tive of the Chief Jus­tice of India in high power se­lec­tion panel, re­port­edly claimed there were “prima fa­cie find­ings of guilt” on some se­ri­ous al­le­ga­tions against Verma con­trary to re­tired SC judge Jus­tice AK Patnaik’s claims that there were “no ev­i­dence of cor­rup­tion”. In the mean­time, Se­nior Congress leader Mal­likar­jun Kharge termed as a ‘mis­take’ the re­moval of Verma as CBI head and ac­cused the gov­ern­ment of “de­stroy­ing” the premier in­ves­ti­gat­ing the agency.

But both the judges — serv­ing and re­tired — re­port­edly re­futed Kharge’s claims that Verma was not get­ting proper hear­ing. Me­dia reports quoted Jus­tice Patnaik as say­ing, “Verma had ac­cess to all the doc­u­ments and got a per­sonal hear­ing.”

The me­dia re­port also stated that Jus­tice Patnaik claimed there was no ev­i­dence

The gov­ern­ment did a mis­take by re­mov­ing the (CBI) Di­rec­tor with­out even calling a meet­ing .... They took ac­tion only on the ba­sis of CVC re­port. Mal­likar­jun Kharge, Congress leader

against Verma re­gard­ing cor­rup­tion and the en­tire en­quiry was held on CBI Spe­cial Di­rec­tor Rakesh Asthana’s com­plaint. He re­port­edly also claimed that none of the find­ings in the CVC re­port were his. He also said that what the CVC says can­not be the fi­nal word.

How­ever, as per Jus­tice Markandey Katju, a for­mer Supreme Court judge and for­mer col­league of Jus­tice Sikri, Jus­tice Sikri be­lieved there were prima fa­cie find­ings of guilt on some se­ri­ous al­le­ga­tions against Verma and that his con­tin­u­a­tion as the Di­rec­tor of CBI had be­come un­ten­able.

In the mean­time, Kharge, mem­ber of the Se­lec­tion Com­mit­tee which shunted out Verma, said he was not given a chance to present his side. Kharge had sub­mit­ted a dis­sent note ques­tion­ing CVC find­ings. In­ter­est­ingly, he had ex­pressed his opposition even when the panel had de­cided to ap­point Verma two years ago.

Jus­tice AK Sikri re­futed claims of re­tired SC judge Jus­tice AK Patnaik who claimed there was no ev­i­dence of cor­rup­tion against Alok Verma (above)

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