Embattled CBI director Ranjit Sinha’s career has entered the twilight zone and the Government has reportedly begun the process of finding his replacement. Sources say that a six-member selection committee including senior IPS officers Abhyanand, Sharad Kumar, Krishna Chaudhary, Anil Sinha, Arup Patnaik and K.P. Raghubansi has been constituted for the purpose. However, the Government faces a real dilemma since there is no Leader of Opposition in the Lok Sabha. Unlike provisions for selection of Chief Vigilance Commissioner, Chief Information Commissioner or Lokpal members, the selection of a CBI director cannot be made without the Leader of Opposition on the selection panel. Sources say that the Government will have to amend the Delhi Police Special Establishment Act before Sinha retires on December 2 to enable the selection of his successor. Easier of course would be to allow CBI Special director A.K. Sinha to act as CBI chief until the post is filled.
Durga Shakti Nagpal, the spunky and honest IAS officer, who came into the limelight last year when she fell out with the Samajwadi Party Government in Uttar Pradesh, may be moving to the Centre on deputation. Apparently, Union Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh is keen to have her on board as an officer on special duty (OSD) and has sought cadre and vigilance clearances for her move. However, observers are watching to see if the UP Government clears her deputation. Nagpal’s association with the current Government in the State has been stormy. She was suspended from service in July 2013 and only reinstated after a nationwide public furore. It now remains to be seen if Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav will create a hurdle in her path or let the past bury the past. Watch this space for updates.
An Old Hand
There are naturally quite a few applicants for the three vacant posts of central information commissioner. Such positions are a natural magnet for ex-bureaucrats, among others, many of whom had applied earlier too but failed to make the grade. However, there is one particular ex-babu, former law secretary Brahm Avtar Agrawal, who seems to apply for every important position that is vacant. Sources say that Agrawal, who is at present a member of the Central Administrative Tribunal in Chandigarh, is also one aspirant for the central information commission. Apparently, even when he was law secretary during the UPA Government’s tenure, he was keen on re-employment, and put in his application for every open position. So, his latest attempt is simply in keeping with form! May he succeed!