Ranjit Sinha has been appointed as the new CBI chief and confirmed of his position despite opposing cries from the BJP and the Delhi Police commissioner Neeraj Kumar. His appointment was approved by the committee of the Union cabinet headed by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and reaffirmed on Friday. The battle for the top post in the country's leading investigating agency was an intense no-holds barred affair with the BJP wanting to stall it and Neeraj claiming he was overlooked for the post, only to later withdraw in the fight.
The other two contenders for the post were director general of National Investigating Agency S.C. Sinha and additional director general of UP Police (homeguards) Atul.
Asked about what tilted the scales in his favour, Sinha said: "Due preference was given to seniority by the government."
Established railway security systems following 26/11
Sinha served in the CBI as joint director, administration and joint director, anti-corruption. He also served in Jammu and Kashmir as IG (operations) in the CRPF. During his stint as the ADGP in the Indo-Tibetan Border Police he was instrumental in strengthening the security of the Indian mission in Afghanistan.
Sinha is presently Director General of the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) force.
The 1974 batch officer from Bihar cadre will have a two-year term as CBI chief. He will take over from A.P. Singh on December 1.
Interestingly, the government's move to appoint Sinha as CBI director in such haste is seen as a move aimed to keeping further controversies at bay. With Sinha's appointment, the petition filed by the Delhi Police commissioner Neeraj Kumar before the Central Administrative Tribunal challenging his non-inclusion in the list of names being considered for the top post, due for hearing on Friday, has become ineffective. This is one of the reasons why the BJP has asked the Prime Minister to
withhold the appointment.
An illustrious 37-year career
Sinha had earlier served the CBI on deputation as DIG in Patna and also served as Joint Director (Anti-corruption) and Joint Director (Administration) in Delhi.
Before joining as DG, ITBP, Sinha headed Railway Protection Force (RPF) as DG and made significant contribution in implementing integrated security schemes at various Railway Stations in the wake of the terrorist attack at Mumbai's CST Railway Station.
Sinha has had an illustrious career spanning over 37-years.
An MPhil from Indian Institute of Public Administration here, Sinha is an avid reader and writer and regular contributor on police-related issued in various journals and magazines.
A recipient of Police Medal for Meritorious Service and the Presidents Police Medal for Distinguished Service, Sinha has served as SSP at Ranchi, Madhubani and Saharsa districts and also as DIG of naxal-affected Magadh Range in Bihar.
He has also served in CRPF as IG (Operations) in Srinagar and IG (Personnel) in Delhi.
Neeraj - two batches junior to Sinha
Neeraj Kumar had last week dragged the government to the tribunal, complaining that he’d been unfairly overlooked for the post on the grounds that a government official he had arrested for bribery then accused him of criminal intimidation and illegal confinement. But on Friday, Neeraj withdrew his plea from CAT against the government's decision to not consider his name for the top post in the probe agency.
A bench of Central Administrative Tribunal (CAT) comprising Chairman Syed Rafat Alam and member R C Panda allowed Neeraj's counsel to withdraw the application, observing that with the appointment of Sinha, a 1974-batch IPS officer and current Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) Director General, the plea has become infructuous.
"Application dismissed as withdraw," the bench said.
Sinha is a 1974 batch officer of Bihar cadre, whereas Neeraj, who is two batches junior to him, belongs to the Union Territory cadre.
Neeraj had moved the tribunal aggrieved over non-inclusion of his name among the three officers shortlisted by the Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) for being considered for the post of the next CBI Director.
Neeraj, a 1976 batch IPS officer, in his application had questioned the procedure for picking the three officers and excluding his name for the top post in country's premier investigating agency.