New Delhi: Prime Minister Manmohan rejected BJP’s demand to keep in abeyance the appointment of new CBI Director Ranjit Sinha, the Prime Minister`s Office (PMO) tweeted on Friday.
In a letter to BJP leader Arun Jaitley, the Prime Minister said the premier investigating agency could not be kept without a head pending the enactment of the Lokpal and "the question of keeping the new appointment in abeyance does not arise."
The Prime Minister added, “The insinuation that appointment was to pre-empt the procedure recommended by the select committee is wholly unwarranted and devoid of any merit.”
“I also refute the suggestion that appointments to this post in the past by UPA Government were motivated,” PM said further.
In a series of tweets, the PMO added, "As you are aware, the Lokpal and Lokayukta Bill 2011 is still awaiting passage in the Rajya Sabha. Many changes have been suggested by the Select Committee which are required to be considered by the Government for amendments. After the Bill as amended is duly passed by the Rajya Sabha, it will be returned to the Lok Sabha for further consideration. A premier agency like the CBI cannot be left without an administrative head pending the enactment of the new law."
The Lokpal and Lokayuktas Bill was still awaiting passage in the Rajya Sabha and it was referred to a Select Committee which has tabled its report today in the Rajya Sabha, Singh said.
"Many changes have been suggested by the Select Committee which are required to be considered by the Government for introducing official amendments. After the Bill as amended is duly passed by the Rajya Sabha, it will be returned to the Lok Sabha for further consideration," he said.
He said even as the Government was making all efforts to enact the new law, the top post in the CBI could not be kept vacant.
"Under the circumstances the Government has, in public interest, made the appointment in accordance with the provisions of the CVC Act as presently applicable and the extant procedures, which had been set in motion much earlier," the Prime Minister said.
Sinha, a 1974 batch officer of Bihar cadre, has been appointed as the next CBI chief. He is presently the Director General of Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) force.
With PTI inputs