CBI Additional Director row: Pachnanda opts out


New Delhi: In a new twist to the row over appointment of Additional Director in the CBI, R K Pachnanda, who was cleared by the CVC panel for the post, has approached the Supreme Court saying he did not wish to stake claim and accepted the Government’s decision of appointing Archana Ramasundaram to the key slot.

A 1983-batch IPS officer from West Bengal cadre, Pachnanda moved the Supreme Court suo moto after CBI filed a petition in the apex court defending its decision to appoint Ramasundaram, a 1980 batch IPS officer from Tamil Nadu cadre. The CBI, in its 11-page affidavit, had said that its opposition to Pachnanda’s name for the post of Additional Director in the agency was based on the officer’s previous stint in the CBI.

“The inputs shared by Director CBI relate to the officer selected by the CVC selection committee and relate to his earlier tenure in CBI. These inputs relate to ineffective supervision of the cases that were investigated at Chandigarh branch….Later, on review of cases of the branch, the then DCBI (Director CBI) had approved on the file that he should not be considered for any induction in CBI,” CBI Director Ranjit Sinha said in his affidavit.

The CBI Director said in the affidavit that the officer was shortlisted for elite Special Protection Group, guarding the Prime Minister, but was not “found suitable for the job because of adverse reports and accordingly not selected. Material in this regard is available with the Union of India and can be produced before this court.”

Pachnanda in his application on Friday requested impleadment in the case “only to protect his rights and his reputation” since he apprehended that while defending Ramasundaram’s appointment, the Government or the CBI may not give correct picture about his service records and “may cause irreparable injury since the applicant still has four and half years of service left and is eligible to be promoted to the post of Director General of Police in any Central Police organisation.”

Pachnanda, in his five-paged affidavit, also said that he, however, “with greatest respect does not wish to question the decision of the Union of India to appoint respondent No 6 (Ramasundaram), nor does he wish to stake claim to the said petition and leaves the issue to this court in the interest of justice in his own interest.”

The affidavits were filed in response to a PIL filed by Vineet Narain who challenged the decision of the Government to appoint Ramasundaram as Additional Director of CBI after the CVC panel had refused to change the name of Pachnanda despite opposition from the CBI.

The Supreme Court has restrained Ramasundaram from functioning as Additional Director until further directions. The court will be hearing the case tomorrow.


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