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What is Central Bureau of Investigation?

Central Bureau of Investigation

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) is the foremost investigating agency of India. Working under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions, the CBI is headed by the Director. The CBI has been known to investigate several economic crimes, special crimes, cases of corruption and other high-profile cases.

The founding director of the CBI was D. P. Kohli, who clinch the office from 1 April 1963 to 31 May 1968. Before this, Kohli was Inspector-general of police for the Special Police Establishment from 1955 to 1963 and clench law-enforcement positions in Madhya Bharat (as chief of police), Uttar Pradesh and local central-government offices. For outstanding service, Kohli was awarded the Padma Bhushan in 1967. Kohli looked in the Special Police Establishment the potential to grow into a National Investigative Agency. He protected the organization during his long career as inspector general and director and laid the foundation on which the agency grew.

The Central Bureau of Investigation traces its origin to the Special Police Establishment (SPE) which was established in 1941 by the Government of India. The work of the SPE then was to investigate cases of bribery and corruption in transactions with the War & Supply Deptt. Of India during World War II. Superintendence of the S.P.E. was conferred with the War Department. Even after the end of the War, the requirement for a Central Government agency to investigate cases of bribery and corruption by Central Government employees was felt. The Delhi Special Police Establishment Act was therefore brought into action in 1946. This Act transferred the superintendence of the SPE to the Home Department and its actions were enlarged to cover all departments of the Govt. of India. The jurisdiction of the Special Police Establishment extended to all the Union Territories and could be extended also to the States with the consent of the State Government concerned.

The DSPE got its popular current name, Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), through a Home Ministry resolution dated 1.4.1963. Originally the offences that were notified by the Central Government related only to corruption by Central Govt. servants. Induration, with the setting up of a large number of public sector undertakings, the employees of these undertakings were also brought under CBI purview. Similarly, with the nationalization of the banks in 1969, the Public Sector Banks and their employees also came within the scope of the CBI.

CBI is exempted from the allocation of the Right to Information Act. This exemption was provided by the government on 9 June 2011 (with similar exemptions to the National Investigating Agency (NIA), the Directorate General of Income Tax Investigation and the National Intelligence Grid (Natgrid) on the basis of national security. It was criticized by the Central Information Commission and RTI activists, who said the blanket exemption breaching the letter and intent of the RTI Act.


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