Extension of police powers to persons who are not members of police force under the Lokpal Bill was vehemently opposed by CBI on the ground of established principles of jurisprudence.
Section 20 (7) of the Lokpal Bill which provides for extension of police powers of taking final decision after investigation and filing police report in the competent court to persons who are not police officers, is the centre of controversy.
It said a similar provision is being introduced through insertion of Section 8B in Section 8 of the CVC Act for cases referred by CVC to CBI.
“This is against the provisions of Section 173 of the CrPC. CBI strongly feels that provisions of Section 173 of the CrPC should not be tampered with…CBI is strongly against the extension of police powers to persons who are not members of a police force,” the agency has told the Rajya Sabha Select Committee examining the Lokpal Bill.
CBI said extension of police powers to non-police personnel will be against the established jurisprudence on the subject which provides the powers for taking final decision after conclusion of investigation to the investigation agency.
It also said the move would amount to “interference” in investigation and noted that even the courts do not interfere in the process of investigation.
The agency, however, said with a proposed amendment in clause 20 (6) by the government, the police powers of the investigating agency to decide on the outcome of the probe and file police report before a court will be restored.
“However, the subsequent sub clauses (7) and (8) of clause 20 have not been deleted/suitably amended accordingly, which will create an anomalous situation of two report being filed in the court,” it told the Committee recently.
CBI said sub clauses of clause 23 has not been amended to reflect the proposed amendment to clause 20 (6) “which, if not amended, would render the police report of the investigating agency redundant.”