New Delhi: A day after the Supreme Court reinstated Alok Verma as the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) Director with limited powers, he resumed office on Wednesday.
Verma, who was sent on forced leave on the intervening night of October 23-24, returned to work after almost two-and-a-half months.
He left from his residence in central Delhi’s Janpath area at around 10.10 a.m and reached the agency’s headquarters in Lodhi Road area 25 minutes later. He was received by M. Nageswara Rao, who was appointed to look after Verma’s duties and functions.
Verma, a 1979-batch IPS officer of Arunachal Pradesh-Goa-Mizoram and Union Territories (AGMUT) cadre, was Delhi’s Police Commissioner before his appointment as CBI Director on February 1, 2017. His tenure ends on January 31.
On Tuesday, the Supreme Court reinstated Verma as the agency chief by setting aside the Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) and the Centre’s decision to divest him of his powers to function as its head but with a caveat that he will not take any policy decision till a high-level committee goes into the issue afresh.
Disposing of a petition filed by Verma and an NGO, Common Cause, a bench of Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul and K.M. Joseph said Verma would “cease and desist” from taking any policy decisions till the issue of denuding of his powers was decided by the High Power Committee (HPC) comprising the Prime Minister, Leader of Opposition and the Chief Justice.
While reinstating Verma, the top court also junked the Centre’s order appointing Rao as the interim Director.
The judgment climaxes a six-month long battle between Verma and Special Director Rakesh Asthana, who both leveled corruption allegations against each other. In October, matters came to a head when Verma lodged an FIR against Asthana on a complaint by one Satish Sana Babu, the alleged middleman in meat exporter Moin Qureshi’s case.