- The precursor to the CBI was the Special Police Establishment, which was India’s first agency to investigate corruption. It was set in 1941 by the British.
- In 1963, the Home Ministry expanded its power and changed its name to the Central Bureau of Investigation. It is governed by the Delhi Special Police Establishment Act (DSPE), 1946.
- The CBI was established with a view to investigate serious crimes related to Defence of India, corruption in high places, serious fraud, cheating and embezzlement and social crime, particularly of hoarding, black-marketing and profiteering in essential commodities, having all-India and inter-state ramifications.
- CBI acts as an interface between the law enforcement agencies of India and other countries to ensure cooperation. It facilitates exchange and sharing of information by these agencies.
Supervision over CBI
- The superintendence of CBI related to investigation of offences under the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988 lies with the Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) and in other matters with the Department of Personnel & Training (DOPT) in the Ministry of Personnel, Pension & Grievances.
NIA vs. CBI
- The National Investigation Agency (Refer Pulse October 2020 edition) has been constituted after the Mumbai terror attack in November 2008 mainly for investigation of incidents of terrorist attacks, funding of terrorism and other terror related crime, whereas CBI investigates crime of corruption, economic offences and serious and organized crime other than terrorism.
- Before the lokpal act was legislated, the CBI director was appointed by the DSPE Act. Now, the Lokpal Act governs the appointment of the CBI director.
- Now, the CBI director is appointed by the Centre on the basis of the recommendation of a search committee comprising:
- the Prime Minister as the chairperson,
- the Chief Justice of India and
- the Leader of Opposition.
- In the absence of a formal Leader of Opposition in the Lok Sabha, the leader of the floor of the largest opposition party takes part in the search committee meetings.
Why in News?
- President Ram Nath Kovind has promulgated an Ordinance to extend the tenure of Director of the Central Bureau of Investigation up to five years. The present tenure of CBI is two years.