Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) officer AK Bassi, who was heading the probe in the bribery case against CBI special director Rakesh Asthana, on Tuesday moved the Supreme Court challenging his transfer to Port Blair in the Andamans. This comes a week after Bassi was transferred to Andaman and Nicobar. The Supreme Court, however, declined to give an urgent hearing.
Bassi told the apex court that he has incriminating evidence against Rakesh Asthana in the bribery case and also asked the court to call for evidence of technical surveillance.
The CBI officer also requested the court to set up a Special Investigation Team (SIT) to investigate charges against Asthana.
Soon after M. Nageshwar Rao took charge as the interim chief, he ordered reshuffle of many in team. Of them, one was Joint Director (Policy) A K Sharma, who was transferred to the Multi-Disciplinary Monitoring Agency (MDMA) of CBI and the other was Bassi, who was transferred to the agency’s office in Port Blair in the Andamans.
CBI Director Alok Verma and Asthana were divested of their powers and were sent on leave last week. An order was issued by the government that stated that agency’s Joint Director, M. Nageshwar Rao shall take over the duties and functions of CBI Director with immediate effect. But, Verma had challenged his sudden ouster before the Supreme Court and the top court, while hearing the plea, had said Nageswar Rao cannot take any policy decisions and will only look after the day-to-day administrative affairs of the agency.
It has been alleged that Verma was divested of his powers because he had crucial cases, including the one on Rafale deal, on his table. He was all set to initiate an investigation into the controversial Rafale deal but before he could take any action, he was ousted from the department.
This has raised many eyebrows and suspicions on the government’s intention behind sending Verma on a forced leave.
Also, Asthana was being investigated by the CBI in a bribery case and Asthana is a near and dear of the BJP.
These are all broken pieces of puzzle, which when joined, will lead a massive explosion against the government in power.