Praveen Sinha likely to be officiating Director of CBI

Current chief R.K. Shukla’s two-year tenure ends on February 3

Gujarat cadre IPS officer Praveen Sinha, currently Additional Director of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), is set to be appointed officiating Director of the premier investigative agency.

Current Director R.K. Shukla’s two-year tenure ends on February 3. Mr. Shukla, a Madhya Pradesh cadre IPS officer, was appointed in January 2019. Both he and Mr. Sinha have reportedly been informed about the arrangement by the government till a new chief is appointed.

Top sources in the government told The Hindu that Mr. Sinha will be given charge of the agency for 10-15 days before a new Director is appointed.

The government has initiated the process of appointment and drawn up a panel of eligible officers.

“Those in the panel include BSF chief and Gujarat cadre IPS officer Rakesh Asthana, NIA chief Y.C. Mody, CISF chief Subodh Jaiswal and Kerala DGP Loknath Behera,” a top source said.

All three have served in the agency in the past and handled sensitive cases.

The government will soon call a meeting of the high-powered committee — comprising the Prime Minister, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court and Leader of the Opposition in the Lok Sabha — which will pick the new Director for the agency.

Mr. Asthana was earlier no. 2 in the agency when Alok Verma was the director. However, an open and ugly fight between the two had pushed the government to remove both and install Nageshwar Rao as in-charge Director in the agency in 2018.

The CBI deals with some of the most politically sensitive cases in the country.

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