Topic Of The Day:-“Reinstated, Conditionally: On Cbi Director’s Return”

Supreme Court Rejects The Centre’s Contention In The CBI Director’s Case, But Softens The Blow

In setting aside the orders divesting Alok Verma of his functions and duties as Director of the CBI, the Supreme Court has strengthened the principle that the head of the agency should beinsulated against any form of interference. The court took up the matter in the midst of an unseemly tussle for supremacy between Mr. Verma and Special Director Rakesh Asthana, with corruption charges being traded. However, the court’s interim order asking for a time-bound inquiry into the charges against Mr. Verma is now of no avail, as the Bench, headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi, has chosen to deal only with the major question of law involved. The decision has gone against the government, with the court holding that the action taken against Mr. Verma amounted to a ‘transfer’, something that cannot be done by any authority except the high-powered selection committee headed by the Prime Minister in terms of the 2003 amendments to the law. It has rejected the government’s contention that stripping the CBI Director of his duties did not amount to a transfer, but only a measure to deal with an extraordinary situation. It has gone into the legislative intent behind the amendments to the Central Vigilance Commission Act in 2003, which included changes to the Delhi Special Police Establishment Act before coming up with its finding.The Bench has noted that the amendments flow from the principles laid down by the Supreme Court in 1997 in Vineet Narain to protect the agency, especially its Director, from external interference. As the law is clear that any transfer of the Director can only be made by the selection committee, and there being no provision for any other interim measure, the only way the government can divest the head of the agency of his powers is to let the same committee make the decision. The court has been mindful of the fact that an officer could be stripped of his power without being formally transferred to another position, thereby achieving the objective of interfering with the agency’s functioning by oblique means. Its decision will further strengthen the CBI’s independence. However, it is intriguing that the court passed a consequential order to the selection committee to meet within a week and consider Mr. Verma’s powers and authority. Until then, he has been restrained from making any policy decisions. Having set aside the orders of the government divesting Mr. Verma of his powers, as well as the CVC’s order recommending the action, the court could have reinstated him unconditionally. What it has done, instead, is to soften the blow it had dealt the government by giving it an opportunity to achieve through the committee route what it could not do successfully through its midnight ‘coup’.


1) divesting

Meaning : deprive someone of (power, rights, or possessions)(v).

Synonyms : deprive

Antonyms : offer

Example : “men are unlikely to be divested of power without a struggle”

2) insulated

Meaning : protected by interposing material that prevents the loss of heat or the intrusion of sound(adj).

Synonyms : isolate

Antonyms : mingle

Example : “an insulated loft”

3) midst

Meaning : the middle part or point(n).

Synonyms : center

Antonyms : exterior

Example : “he left his flat in the midst of a rainstorm”

4) tussle

Meaning : a vigorous struggle or scuffle, typically in order to obtain or achieve something(n).

Synonyms : strife

Antonyms : harmony

Example : “there was a tussle for the ball”

5) interim

Meaning : the intervening time.

Synonyms : provisional

Antonyms : finished

Example : “in the interim I’ll just keep my fingers crossed”

6) avail

Meaning : help or benefit(v).

Tamil Meaning :

Synonyms : fitness

Antonyms : afflict

Example : “no amount of struggle availed Charles”

7) stripping

Meaning : remove all coverings from(v).

Synonyms : disrobe

Example : “they stripped the bed”

8) intent

Meaning : intention or purpose(n).

Synonyms : decided

Antonyms : flexible

Example : “with alarm she realized his intent”

9) provision

Meaning : the action of providing or supplying something for use(n).

Synonyms : plan

Antonyms : removal

Example : “new contracts for the provision of services”

10) intriguing

Meaning : arousing one’s curiosity or interest; fascinating(adj).

Synonyms : alluring

Antonyms : boring

Example : “an intriguing story”

11) restrained

Meaning : characterized by reserve or moderation; unemotional or dispassionate.

Synonyms : discreet

Antonyms : extroverted

Example : “his restrained, gentlemanly voice”

12) reinstated

Meaning : restore (someone or something) to their former position or state(v).

Synonyms : restored

Antonyms : displaced

Example : “the union threatened strike action if Owen was not reinstated”

13) dealt

Meaning : distribute (cards) in an orderly rotation to players for a game or round(v).

Synonyms : handle

Antonyms : agree

Example : “the cards were dealt for the last hand”