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PM-Led Committee Removes Alok Verma As CBI Chief

NEW DELHI: Alok Verma was removed as the chief of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Thursday evening by a committee led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, barely 48 hours after he was reinstated by the Supreme Court. The committee said he "had not acted with the integrity expected of him". Mr Verma lost his high-profile job just weeks before his retirement on January 31. The decision was two against one: PM Modi and Justice AK Sikri -- representing Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi who had recused himself from the panel -- favoured Mr Verma's removal. Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge, representing the opposition, put up a dissenting note. Reacting to his removal from the CBI, Mr Verma said that he was transferred on the basis of false, unsubstantiated and frivolous allegations made by only one person, who was trying to harm him.

The top court's order on Tuesday reinstating him is seen as a major loss of face for the government, which is under opposition attack over allegations of using the investigating agency as a tool against political rivals.Congress chief Rahul Gandhi tweeted: "Fear is now rampaging through Mr Modi's mind. He can't sleep. He stole 30,000Cr from the IAF and gave it to Anil Ambani. Sacking the CBI Chief #AlokVerma twice in a row, clearly shows that he is now a prisoner of his own lies."