Category Central Bureau of Investigation

What is the CBI and its functions?

With the CBI recently taking over Bollywood actor Sushant Singh Rajput’s death case, the spotlight has once again been turned on the country’s premier investigation agency. But do you know about the CBI and its functions?

What is the CBI?

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) is a multi-disciplinary, specialized investigation agency in India. It plays an important role in combating corruption in public life and in curbing economic and violent crimes through investigation and prosecution. It also coordinates with Interpol, the international police community, to investigate financial and criminal cases overseas. The CBI which derives its powers from the Delhi Special Police Establishment Act 1946 was set up by the Government of India in 1963.

The CBI works under the superintendence of the Central Vigilance Commission. It is headed by a director, an IPS officer in the rank of a DGP. The CBI director is appointed by a committee, comprising the Prime Minister, the Leader of the Opposition and the Chief Justice of India, for a two-year term. Rishi Kumar Shukla is the current director.

What are its functions?

The CBI has been known to investigate cases of corruption and bribery committed by public servants of Central Government departments and CPSUs, serious crimes such as murder and kidnapping, having national and international ramifications, and other high-profile cases. It also takes up cases relating to breach of laws concerning customs and central excise, income tax, forex regulation and so on, at the request of the department concerned. Simply put, the CBI investigators cases of corruption, economic, offences and serious and organized crime other than terrorism.

Who can order a CBI inquiry?

The Central Government can authorize the CI to investigate a crime in a State only with the consent of the State Government concerned. However, the Supreme Court and the High Courts can direct the CBI to investigate a crime anywhere in the country without getting the consent of the State.

Where should one file a complaint for a CBI probe?

All State capitals have anti-corruption branches of the CBI which can be approached by people either physically or over phone or mail for filing complaints of corruption against public servants of the Central Government. For serious offences, people can approach the CBI branches in Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata and Chennai.


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