Alok Verma's removal: Congress says PM too afraid of probe into Rafale deal

Gandhi's attack came hours after Verma was removed as CBI director by a high-powered committee headed by Modi on charges of corruption and dereliction of duty.

Published: 10th January 2019 11:48 PM  |   Last Updated: 11th January 2019 12:43 AM   |  A+A-

Congress president Rahul gandhi addresses to media at parliament house in New Delhi on Friday. (Photo | Shekhar Yadav/ EPS)

By PTI

NEW DELHI: The Congress on Thursday launched a sharp attack on the government over the removal of CBI Director Alok Verma, with party chief Rahul Gandhi saying the second-time sacking of the probe agency chief's showed that Prime Minister Narendra Modi was a "prisoner of his own lies" and there was fear in his mind over alleged corruption in the Rafale aircraft deal.

The opposition party termed the government's action as a "gross miscarriage of justice" and alleged that the prime minister was trying to protect his and his government's "wrong-doings" by appointing a "pliable officer".

Barely two days after the Supreme Court reinstated him, Verma was removed as CBI Director by a high-powered committee headed by Prime Minister Modi on charges of corruption and dereliction of duty, in an unprecedented action in the central probe agency's 55-year history.

Congress senior spokesperson Anand Sharma alleged that the Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) "had lost credibility and was compromised".

He said the present CVC had no authority to form a panel of officers as mandated under the law.

Sharma also alleged that the CVC was acting at the behest of the Prime Minister's office.

He demanded an independent probe monitored by the Supreme Court into the events of October 23/24 night when Verma was removed as CBI Director in a 'midnight operation'.

"Fear is now rampaging through Mr Modi's mind. He can't sleep. He stole 30,000Cr from the IAF and gave it to Anil Ambani. Sacking the CBI Chief #AlokVerma twice in a row, clearly shows that he is now a prisoner of his own lies. Satyamev Jayate," Gandhi tweeted.

"By removing #AlokVerma from his position without giving him the chance to present his case, PM Modi has shown once again that he's too afraid of an investigation, either by an independent CBI director or by Parliament via JPC," the Congress said on its Twitter handle.

Addressing a press conference, Sharma said, "It is not only a gross miscarriage of justice, it's a travesty that we have a situation where even the basic tenets of natural justice have been thrown to the winds by none other than the committee chaired by the PM."

He alleged that the prime minister was stopping the CBI from investigating himself and his ministers, an obvious reference to the alleged corruption in the Rafale aircraft deal.

Sharma also supported Mallikarjun Kharge's views that Verma has the right to present his case and alleged that the government did not want the CBI to investigate certain cases.

Sharma alleged that the prime minister was preparing a 'Suraksha Kavach' for himself and his friends so that the acts of "omissions and commissions" under him are not looked into for the next two years.

He alleged that the decision has further dented the reputation of the CBI.

While there was no immediate comment available from the PMO, the BJP termed the Congress a "sore loser", saying the party has been left to lick its wounds "after failing to subvert the central probe agency by joining internal personal battles".

To the BJP's charges, Sharma said the prime minister wants to “compromise” the investigating agency to target opposition through political vendetta.

Sharma said today's developments are ''very disturbing" and the CBI has been "deliberately wrecked by the prime minister, the prime minister's office and the BJP government".

"They are uncomfortable with an independent CBI with the authority under law to investigate or probe any matter, any person in high authority and to act according to the law for any act of omission, commission or irregularioty. The Supreme Court restores the CBI director and the prime minister who apparently is in panic and has disposes the director again. If there was nothing to hide, if the prime minister was not worried over any matter, then the CBI director should have been allowed to complete his tenure," he said.

Stay up to date on all the latest Nation news with The New Indian Express App. Download now
(Get the news that matters from New Indian Express on WhatsApp. Click this link and hit 'Click to Subscribe'. Follow the instructions after that.)

Comments

Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp