Commenting on the Central government ousting Alok Verma as the CBI director for the second time in 10 weeks, former Chief Justice of India R M Lodha, who had coined the phrase “caged parrot” for the Central Bureau of Investigation’s plight as a prisoner of government demands, on Friday said that the parrot “cannot truly fly in the free sky till it is free”.
“The time has come when something needs to be done, and must be done, to ensure that the CBI truly becomes the premier investigating agency,” Justice Lodha (retired) told The Indian Express.
On how this independence has to be secured, Justice Lodha said, “There are modes and methods by which this can be done. Successive governments, too, will try and influence, and use CBI for their ends. But I think this matter is sub judice. It came up during the coal scam issue, and it must be followed through – by the courts or by some other method – to ensure the CBI’s independence.”
On Verma’s transfer, he said, “On the face of it, as the Supreme Court only pointed out to the procedural infirmity of not calling the committee, that was done by the government and used to transfer the CBI chief.”
Hearing matters in the coal locks allocation scam in May 2013, an irate Justice Lodha had berated the Union government’s attorney and asked how long it would take to to set the “caged parrot” free, and for it to stop being “its master’s voice”.