New Delhi, News24 Bureau, Dec 6: The Supreme Court is hearing CBI Director Alok Verma's plea against the Centre's decision to divest him of powers and send him on leave. On Thursday CJI Ranjan Gogoi asked, "Fight between the two senior most CBI officers did not emerge overnight so why did government take immediate steps to divest the CBI Director Alok Verma of his powers without consulting the Selection Committee? When Verma was retiring in few months why not wait for few more months and consult selection committee?'CJI Gogoi further told Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, "Government has to be fair, what was the difficulty in consulting the selection committee before divesting Alok Verma of his power? Essence of every government action should be to adopt the best course' A bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi said Attorney General K K Venugopal told it that circumstances culminating in the situation started in July. Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, appearing for the Central Vigilance Commission, referred to apex court judgements and laws governing the CBI.
The CBI director and the special director were fighting like "kilkenny cats", exposing the country's premier investigating agency to "public ridicule", the government told the Supreme Court on Wednesday while justifying the decision to divest Verma of his duties.Attorney General K K Venugopal also told the top court that the government was well "within its right to intervene" and send both officers on leave by divesting them of their powers.The top law officer asserted that "only the God knows where and how this fight between the two top officers would have ended" if the government would not have taken the action which was aimed at restoring the public faith in the CBI.Solicitor General Tushar Mehta told Supreme Court that CVC had come to the conclusion that an extraordinary situation had arisen and that extraordinary situations sometimes need extraordinary remedies.Attorney General KK Venugopal in Supreme Court said, "CBI Director Alok Verma was not transferred and it was an artificial argument by him that he was transferred. It was not a transfer and two officers were divested of the charges and functions.'The court was hearing pleas of Verma, who is challenging the Centre's decision against him, and NGO Common Cause, seeking a court-monitored SIT probe into allegations of corruption against various CBI officials, including Asthana.