Minor changes in DPSE Act, no new bill likely on CBI autonomy

New Delhi: Government may not push ahead with a bill on CBI but do some tweaking of the provision in the law relating to the agency.
Official sources said that the Group of Ministers, which has been tasked to work on measures to insulate CBI from external influence, has had two meetings so far and is said to be not too enthusiastic over loosening the grip on the agency.
The sources said Attorney General Goolam E Vahanvati, who was present in one of the meetings, was asked to prepare an affidavit to be submitted before the Supreme Court giving details of the proposed changes in the Delhi Special Police Establishment (DSPE) Act.
Under the present DSPE Act which governs CBI, the agency can only investigate specific crimes notified by the central government under the Act but the proposed bill aimed at giving powers to it to investigate cases spread across state borders without needing state governments' permission.
The agency has submitted a bill in 2010 to the Government as it felt the DSPE Act has not been able to cater to changing nature of crimes.
The Bill defined the mandate of CBI, selection process of its Director, organisational structure, extension of powers and jurisdiction of the Bureau to States, Powers of officers of the Bureau among others.
But the sources said government is not inclined to bring these changes in the law, for which it has the draft bill.
Instead the Group might recommend some more financial autonomy to the agency chief as in the present system even for minor expenditure clearance from the nodal Personnel Ministry is required.
They said the mood in the last meeting of the GoM was that judiciary cannot dictate the executive about the working of CBI and minor changes in the DSPE Act would be enough.