A centre of excellence in investigation in CBI, announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi three years ago, is yet to see the light of the day, a parliamentary panel said on Wednesday, even as it underlined the “level of vacant positions” affecting the agency’s performance.
The setting up of International Centre of Excellence in Investigation (ICEI-CBI) at the CBI Academy, Ghaziabad, was made by the prime minister in 2015 to render world class courses on investigation and prosecution in specialised and emerging domains of crime, including cyber crime, as well as the law enforcement community of the country.
The Parliamentary Standing Committee on Personnel, Public Grievances, Law and Justice in a report tabled in the parliament today said there was a need for capacity enhancement and skill development of those working in the CBI on continuous basis.
“However, the centre is yet to see the light of the day as it is still pending at various stages of approval,” the report said.
The Committee recommended that the central investigative agency and the government expedite various approvals required for setting up of the centre. The panel also raised apprehension on the “level of vacancies” in the CBI, saying it would have an impact on its performance.
Increasing number of cases are now being referred to the CBI pertaining to factors like internal security, cyber crime, corruption, financial irregularities, and the nation cannot afford to have its premier investigative agency understaffed and thus ill-prepared, it said.
The panel observed that the level of vacant positions in executive ranks, law officers and technical officers was about 16 per cent, 28 per cent and 56 per cent, respectively.
At the top level, out of four posts of Special Director/Additional Director, three are lying vacant, it lamented. CBI, in their presentation, stated that they were being affected by the number of vacancies due to the rising burden of investigations.
The parliamentary committee said it had raised the issue in its earlier reports, but “nothing was visible on the ground”. To overcome the perennial problem of vacancies in the CBI, the panel recommended that the government take proactive steps in filling up of vacancies well in advance and also simplify the recruitment rules, it said.
The government may also consider making terms of deputation to CBI more rewarding in order to retain capable officers and attract best officers from the state police forces, central para military forces, Intelligence Bureau, etc, the panel added.