The CBI is no more a “caged parrot” but is truly performing its duty as India’s top criminal investigating agency, Law Minister Kiren Rijiju asserted, saying there was a time when people sitting in the government sometimes used to become a problem in investigations.
He also said that the challenges some officers had faced in the past are “no more in existence”.
The minister’s remarks defending the agency came close on the heels of Chief Justice of India N V Ramana saying that the CBI’s credibility has come under deep public scrutiny with the passage of time as its actions and inactions have raised questions in some cases.
In a tweet on Sunday, Rijiju said, “CBI is no more “Caged Parrot” but truly performing its duty as India’s top criminal investigating agency”.
He also shared a short video of his address on Saturday at the first-ever conference of investigating officers of the CBI.
In his address, Rijiju said that “there used to be a time, I remember very well, that the people who sit in the government, sometimes they become a problem in the investigation”.
He said today there is a prime minister who himself is playing a lead role in the crusade against corruption.
“I know the difficulties when people in power are involved in corruption; when their compliances which are difficult to be met with… It becomes difficult for the CBI. Then we have heard some unsavoury remarks from the judiciary in the past. We have come a long way now,” the minister said.
During a hearing of the coalfield allocation case in 2013, the Supreme Court had described the CBI as a “caged parrot”.
Addressing the 19th D P Kohli Memorial Lecture of the CBI on April 1, Chief Justice of India (CJI) Ramana had also called for creating an “independent umbrella institution” to bring various investigating agencies under one roof.
The CJI said, “When it comes to the CBI, it possessed immense trust of the public in its initial phase. In fact, the judiciary used to be flooded with requests for transfer of investigations to the CBI, as it was a symbol of impartiality and independence.”
“Whenever the citizenry doubted the skill and impartiality of its own state police, they sought an investigation by the CBI, as they wanted justice to be done. But, with the passage of time, like every other institution of repute, the CBI has also come under deep public scrutiny.Its actions and inactions have raised questions regarding its credibility, in some cases,” Justice Ramana had said.