Ever since UPA-II assumed office, the ruling dispensation has been fighting not only the Opposition but also our institutions of eminence. The CBI now joins the ranks of the CAG which was at the receiving end for pointing out the “presumptive loss” in 2G, with the Prime Minister and a senior Minister telling it that it must realise the subtle difference between “policy” and “policing.”
The government must realise that the little known office of Chief Election Commissioner became a household term thanks to the proactive role of T.N. Seshan. The reach of governance should be felt by the masses and none should bother about the overreach of our institutions — if they are aimed at the welfare of the common man. Repeated assault on our own systems will only weaken the governing process.
The UPA government seems determined to terrorise autonomous institutions like the CAG and the CBI in order to escape scrutiny. It is sheer arrogance to try and put down these institutions for being upright. People in general have more faith in the CAG and the CBI than in the government and its policies.
The Prime Minister’s advice to the CBI must be taken seriously. All the members of the CBI can never be above board and free of political or communal prejudices.
Dr. Singh has rightly done some plain-speaking on the CBI’s functional aspects. His comments assume great significance in the wake of the Gauhati High Court order on the existence of the agency, and a Supreme Court observation earlier that the CBI is a “caged parrot.” He knows well how important it is to strike a balance between total autonomy to the CBI and having some executive control over the premier investigating agency. Some sort of transparency and accountability are necessary for the CBI’s smooth functioning.
He has succinctly said that some decisions were indeed “risky,” thereby implying that the CBI has to tread with caution before coming to conclusions. It must infuse a new sense in the agency’s operations.