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Autonomy of ED and CBI UPSC NOTE

 


Recent issues regarding the autonomy of ED and CBI

  • The Centre promulgated two ordinances to extend the tenures of the Directors of CBI and Enforcement Directorate from 2 years to upto 5 years and issued an order to amend the Fundamental Rules, 1922.

    • Director of CBI is appointed under the Delhi Special Police Establishment Act, 1946.

    • Directorate of Enforcement is appointed under the Central Vigilance Commission Act, 2003.


  • Delhi Special Police Establishment (DSPE) Act,1946 and the Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) Act, 2003 have been amended to give the government the power to keep the two chiefs in their posts for one year after they have completed their two-year terms.

  • Chiefs of the Central agencies currently have a fixed two-year tenure, but can now be given three annual extensions.


  • The Supreme Court’s verdict upholding statutory amendments made in 2021 to allow multiple extensions of service to heads of investigative agencies. 

  • Director of Enforcement, S.K. Mishra was appointed for a two-year term in 2018, but in 2020, the original appointment was retrospectively amended to make it a three-year tenure. 

  • He was given two annual extensions in 2021 and 2022, despite crossing the age of superannuation.

Concerns over autonomy

  • The amendment is a setback to the cause of protecting their institutional independence.

  • The government ignored the Court’s earlier observation that such extension should be given to those who have attained superannuation only in “rare and exceptional cases”.

  • The heads of the CBI and ED have an assured term of two years regardless of superannuation, and the introduction of a power to extend it to five years means an officer may get up to three annual extensions.


  • It encourage a carrot-and-stick policy to make Directors toe the government’s line.

  • Allowing the government to have Directors who can pick and choose what cases to investigate based on political instructions certainly offends the rights of citizens to equal treatment and impartial investigation.

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Learnerz IAS | Concept oriented UPSC Classes in Malayalam: Autonomy of ED and CBI UPSC NOTE
Autonomy of ED and CBI UPSC NOTE
Learnerz IAS | Concept oriented UPSC Classes in Malayalam
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