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Why CBI? Upgrade, reform police forces

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Be it the murder of an innocent schoolboy in Gurgaon, of a well-known journalist in Bengaluru or be it any event of importance requiring police intervention, the public demand is for a CBI probe. What is so special about the CBI? Established in 1943 as the Special Police Establishment (war department) and later given permanent status under an ordinance replaced by the Delhi Special Police Establishment Act 1946, the tiny organisation has grown enormously due to ever-increasing demands for its services. That law prescribes that the CBI can investigate on its own in respect of the notified offences like prevention of corruption — in cases of other offences like murder in any state only with the consent of the states concerned or on the orders of the higher courts.

The CBI has no cadre of its own. Its officers and men are on deputation from the police forces of states like Haryana, Karnataka or any other — the very same police whom people generally do not trust.

The CBI, during its nearly seven decades of existence, has in its functioning slipped, and slipped badly too, several times. Like the state police, the CBI has also been accused time and again of helping culprits and of harassing innocent people. The CBI officers neither have special tools nor training, but they are supposed to be immune from local political influence as no MLA nor even a chief minister is directly capable of causing harm to the career of a CBI officer who disobeys him. But the CBI continues to enjoy a higher........

© Deccan Chronicle