Alok Verma is new CBI chief

Alok Verma is new CBI chief

Alok Verma is new CBI chief

Delhi Police Commissioner Alok Kumar Verma was on Thursday appointed the new CBI Director, almost 50 days after the post fell vacant.

The 1979-batch officer will succeed Anil Sinha, who retired on December 2, 2016. Additional Director Rakesh Asthana was holding charge of  CBI director after Sinha’s retirement.

The appointment came three days after a high-level panel headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi met to decide on the officer to succeed Sinha. Leader of the Congress in the Lok Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge and Chief Justice J S Khehar are the other members of the panel.

The Centre had on Monday told the apex court that it will be appointing a new CBI chief before Friday when it is hearing a petition on the appointment.

Verma’s choice is interesting as he has never had a stint in the CBI. Kharge is learnt to have objected to Verma’s nomination, saying he did not have enough experience in the CBI.

Sources said the panel considered the names of Verma and two others – Special Secretary (Internal Security) R K Dutta, who was transfered from the CBI two days before Sinha’s retirement, and Maharashtra DGP S C Mathur.

The government is learnt to have shortlisted these officers from a panel of around 40 IPS officers from 1979 to 1982 batch as per Supreme Court rules.

A plea against transferring Dutta and giving additional charge to Asthana, a 1984-batch officer of the Gujarat cadre, has also reached the Supreme Court with NGO Common Cause claiming the transfer was done to clear Asthana’s way.