3rd Judge NV Ramana exits Interim CBI Chief case

Supreme Court Justice NV Ramana too today recused himself from hearing a plea challenging Centre’s decision to appoint M Nageshwara Rao as interim director of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).

He is the third judge after Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justice AK Sikri to recuse in the plea filed by an NGO seeking a direction to quash the January 10 order of the government appointing the IPS officer as an interim director of the CBI.

While recusing himself from hearing the matter, Justice Ramana said Rao is from his home state and he had attended the wedding ceremony of Rao’s daughter. He  referred the matter to the CJI to list it before an appropriate bench.

While the CJI cited that he is part of the high-level committee that will appoint the new CBI chief, Justice Sikri was part of the high-powered panel which had removed CBI Director Alok Verma.

The petition, filed by NGO Common Cause and RTI activist Anjali Bhardwaj, has sought laying down of specific mechanisms to ensure transparency in the process of appointment of CBI director.

It alleged that Rao’s appointment was not made on the basis of recommendations of the high-powered selection committee, comprising the prime minister, the leader of the single largest opposition party and the chief justice of India or a judge of the apex court nominated by him.

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