CBI seeks dismissal of petition for separating Director of Prosecution from agency, says post enjoys full autonomy in affidavit

The Central Bureau of Investigation has informed the Delhi High Court that the Directorate of Prosecution has got full autonomy and there is no interference in the functioning of a law officer and it has no decision-making power in the appointment of the Director of Prosecution.

The above-mentioned averments were made in an affidavit filed in a writ petition seeking to separate the Director of Prosecution from CBI and put the same under Central Government as an Independent Prosecution Agency for Prosecution of the cases of CBI and other investigating agencies of the Government of India.

The CBI has sought dismissal of the petition, as the petition prays for amendment to Section 4BA of the Delhi Special Police Establishment Act, 1946 and the same is not maintainable as the Court, in exercise of its writ jurisdiction, cannot legislate.

The CBI has further submitted, it works in a way that the investigating officers and prosecution officers work in a coordinated manner, furthermore, they function with full independence during the investigation and prosecution of cases.

The agency also added:

“It is further submitted that the CBI model of harmonious working of executive officers in tandem with the law officers of its Directorate of Prosecution has been working well over period of time, as is evident from the fact that the CBI has been able to achieve the conviction rate of about 65-70% over a period of time (which is far ahead of any other State Police), despite the fact that the accused persons in the high-profile cases engage the best legal brains to defend themselves in the court of law.”

Further adding:

“Prosecution Wing is completely independent as far as prosecution of cases is concerned and the supervision is very limited in nature and scope, which cannot be termed /construed to be impinging upon the independence of prosecution.”

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CBI with regards to appointment of Director of Prosecution stated that it had no decision-making power, the Central Government appoints the Director of Prosecution and the Directorate of Prosecution has been placed under the administrative control of Director CBI, for the sake of administrative convenience only.

Previously, on December 4, 2020 a division bench of Justice Manmohan and Justice Sanjeev Narula had appointed Senior Advocate Sidharth Luthra as Amicus Curiae in the case. On the last date of hearing, the court had granted the CBI, 2 weeks- time, by way of a last opportunity, to file a reply.

The petition has been listed for hearing on September 20, 2021.
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