“For a short time, the CBI came under the RTI Act. The heavens did not fall during that time. But the triple wrappings of opacity, secrecy and mystery made it move to be taken out of the purview of the RTI Act. “This is a great pity. The CBI is about investigations into corruption and certain crimes. It is not a security or intelligence agency,” Gandhi had said addressing a CBI function here.
The Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT), nodal agency for implementation of the RTI Act, had on June 9, 2011 issued a notification exempting the CBI from the purview of the transparency law.
Srikumar, also a former IPS officer and having an experience of working in CBI, accused the agency of rejecting one of the Central Vigilance Commission’s suggestion of being transparent with its probe. “In one of its monthly review meetings in 2013, the Commission (CVC) asked Director CBI to examine a suggestion to go public with such evidence as is feasible once probe in a case is over. “The CBI is yet to complete its examination of this idea to make it accountable to public and improve its credibility,” he said and added that the CBI has since not responded on the matter. “Investigation is a search for truth and CBI as the premier investigating agency would never get hurt by revealing the truth it gathered in its investigations.
“The courts will judge whether its conclusions are facts based and well reasoned. The public will judge whether the CBI has stood by its motto of Industry, Impartiality, and Integrity in its pursuit of truth,” the former VC said. Srikumar said if investigation is continuing then CBI should not share information. “But once investigation in a case is completed then there is no harm in sharing the detail with public,” he said. Srikumar said under Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC) an accused is supposed to get a copy of the investigation report by a probe agency. Srikumar, who demitted as Vigilance Commissioner on Janu 27 this year, said there was a need to make CBI’s investigation more transparent. (PTI)