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Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI)

Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI)

  • The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) is a powerful organisation that contributes significantly to upholding moral principles in
    society and maintaining the vitality of the economy.

  • Also, it is the nodal police organisation in India that coordinates inquiries on behalf of Interpol Member nations.

  • It works for the Government of India's Department of Personnel, Ministry of Personnel, Pension & Public Grievances.

  • It is not a statutory entity; rather, the Delhi Special Police Establishment Act, of 1946, is where its authority comes from.

  • On matters pertaining to the Prevention of Corruption Act, of 1988, it operates under the direction of the CVC (Central Vigilance Commission).

  • History of Central Bureau of Investigation

  • The then-Government of India understood during the early stages of World War II that increasing wartime spending had exacerbated corrupt behaviour among both officials and non-officials.

  • The State Governments' law enforcement agencies, including the police, were insufficient to handle the crisis.

  • The then-Government of India understood during the early stages of World War II that increasing wartime spending had exacerbated corrupt behaviour among both officials and non-officials.

  • The State Governments' law enforcement agencies, including the police, were insufficient to handle the crisis.

  • Due to these factors, it was necessary to establish a special entity to look into crimes relating to these transactions.

  • As a result, the Government of India established the Special Police Establishment (S.P.E.) in 1941 by executive order under the direction of a Deputy Inspector General of Police by executive order.
  • Functions of CBI
    • It takes up the following cases

  • Economic crimes: for the investigation of significant financial frauds, including crimes involving counterfeit Indian rupee notes, bank frauds, etc.

  • Anti-corruption crimes: for investigation of cases under the prevention of corruption act against public officials, public sector undertakings, corporations, or bodies owned or controlled by the government of india.

  • Suo-moto cases: Only in the union territories may the CBI investigate crimes on its own(suo-motu).
  • Without the approval of the state, the central government can direct CBI to investigate into a crime anywhere in the nation. 

  • National crime bureau of Interpol in india: The nodal police agency for coordinating INTERPOL-related investigations in India is the national crime bureau of Interpol.

  • Data management: it distributes criminal information and preserves crime data.

  • Jurisdiction of Central Bureau of Investigation

  • At first, only corruption by Central Government employees was involved in the offences that were reported to the Central Government.

  • As there were many new public sector undertakings, the employees of these undertakings were also brought within the CBI's jurisdiction.

  • Similar to this, when the banks were nationalised in 1969, the Public Sector Banks and their personnel were included in the CBI's purview.

  • Since 1965, the CBI has also been tasked with conducting selective investigations into serious conventional crimes like murder, kidnapping, and terrorism as well as economic offences. 

  • Missions of CBI

  • reducing economic and violent crimes by thorough investigation and prosecution, and combating corruption in public life.

  • Develop successful processes and practices for case investigation and prosecution in various legal forums.

  • Aid in the fight against high-tech crimes and cybercrime.

  • Provide a positive working atmosphere that promotes cooperation, open communication, and trust between coworkers.
  • In national and international collaboration, support state police organisations and law enforcement organisations, especially when it comes to inquiries and case investigations.

  • Take the initiative in the fight against both domestic and international organised crime.

  • uphold human rights, and safeguard the natural world, the arts, antiques, and our civilization's cultural heritage.

  • Cultivate a humanistic outlook, a scientific mindset, and a spirit of reformation.

  • Strive for excellence and professionalism in all areas of operation so that the organisation can reach new heights of endeavor and success.

  • Criticisms faced by the Central Bureau of Investigation

  • Political meddling in the CBI's investigations has frequently been noted.

  • The agency is understaffed, and the majority of the workers are drawn from other cadres like IPS.

  • The State Government's approval is required for the CBI's investigative authority and jurisdiction, which restricts the scope of the probe.

  • Employee investigations at the central level also require prior government clearance, particularly for those with the title of joint secretary or higher.

  • The CBI's reputation has been tarnished by the sheer volume of cases it has handled improperly and by scams perpetrated under political pressure.

  • A major disadvantage for an investigation agency is the absence of functional and financial autonomy at the organisation.
  • Issues of state's consent to CBI

  • Police as state subject: since the police is a state subject under the constitution, the CBI acts as per the procedure prescribed by the code of criminal procedure, which makes it a police agency, the CBI needs the consent of the state government in question before it can make its presence in that state.
  • Withdrawal of consent: as per section 6 of the Delhi special police establishment act 1946, the state government can withdraw the general consent accorded.
  • There are two kinds of consent:
  • Case-specific consent: Only central government personnel are subject to CBI's jurisdiction. Only with the permission of the specific state government may it look into a case involving workers of that state's government.
  • General consent: Consent is given generally in order to make it easier for the CBI to conduct its investigation into allegations of corruption against central government employees in the concerned state. Nearly all states have agreed to this. Otherwise, the agency would require approval in every situation.
  • Other provisions after removal of consent:
    • The CBI would still be able to look into older cases that were filed when there was widespread consent.
    • The CBI's jurisdiction would also extend to states that have withdrawn approval in cases that were registered elsewhere in India but included individuals stationed there.
    • The CBI will only be prohibited from registering a case within the jurisdiction of states having withdrawal consent if consent is withheld. Nonetheless, the CBI might still lodge complaints in Delhi and carry on its inquiries against those who reside in such states.

  • Way forward
  • Statutory status: 2nd ARC, L.P. Singh committee, and various parliamentary standing committees have called to replace the DSPE act with a comprehensive and law to empower CBI.
  • Delink the CBI from the administrative control of the government: as long as the government has the power to transfer and post officials of its choice in the CBI, the investigating agency will not enjoy autonomy and will be unable to investigate cases freely.
  • CBI director appointment: it should be done through a collegium, as recommended by the Lok pal.
  • Own cadre of officers: one of the demands that have been before the Supreme court, and in line with international best practices, is for the CBI to develop its own dedicated cadre of officers who are not bothered about deputation and abrupt transfers.
  • Recruitment through UPSC: direct recruitment through UPSC can be resumed.
  • More autonomy: empower CBI to fix its accountability only to parliament like CAG.
  • Supreme court guidelines in Vineet Narain case:
    • Nodal agency to be established for dealing with political-criminal bureaucratic nexus.
    • CBI should submit its working report every 3 months.
    • Establishment of the directorate of prosecution.

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