No need for increased superintendence over CBI: CVC Chowdary

New Delhi: There is no need for increased superintendence over the CBI in the aftermath of allegations against its former Director Ranjit Sinha meeting the accused in coal blocks allocation and 2G scam cases, Central Vigilance Commissioner K V Chowdary said today.

Central Vigilance Commissioner K V Chowdary
Central Vigilance Commissioner K V Chowdary

His views assume significance as the Supreme Court has been seeking CVC’s assistance in various cases being probed by the CBI. There have also been instances of differences of opinion between CBI and CVC over closure coal blocks cases. “There is already superintendence over them by the CVC. There is no need for further superintendence. As and when the need arises or as per the direction of the Supreme Court, we do it (exercise superintendence),” Chowdary said.

He said the CBI is performing duties mandated to it under the law with the help of professional officers. “It has good officers. There have been good cases done by the agency also,” the CVC said. The CVC exercises superintendence over CBI in investigation of corruption cases.

Asked about the apex court seeking the Commission’s assistance in probing alleged meetings of Ranjit Sinha, who has now retired, with accused in coalgate and 2G cases, Chowdary said the CVC would be filing its reply to the Supreme Court. The SC had termed the meetings as “inappropriate” and sought CVC’s assistance in probing those. “We will be discussing it and filing our response to the Supreme Court. I have just taken over. So, the Commission will study and certainly file its reply,” he said.

Chowdary, a former chairman of Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT), took over as Central Vigilance Commissioner on June 9. Listing out his priorities, Chowdary said the probity watchdog would try to bring down the time taken in probing a corruption case to one year. “There is a time gap from when a complaint is received and till it reaches a logical conclusion. I will try to bring down that time. The Commission will try to ensure conclusion of a corruption complaint, excluding trials in a court, to one year,” he said.

At present, the probe in some cases have been delayed by about three years. Chowdary said honest bureaucrats need not fear three Cs–Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG), Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and Central Vigilance Commission (CVC). “I do not feel that an honest bureaucrat needs to fear anybody. I have been a bureaucrat myself and realised that,” he said.

Chowdary also favoured penal provisions for people who file “motivated and vexatious complaints” of corruption against government employees.