The Centre on Tuesday appointed Subodh Kumar Jaiswal as the new Director of the prestigious Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI). A 1985-batch Maharashtra cadre IPS Officer, Jaiswal was picked ahead of two other key officers in the race for the post – SSB DG Kumar Rajesh Chandra and Special Secretary in the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) VSK Kaumudi. Jaiswal has been serving as the Director-General of the CISF. He will have a two-year tenure as the CBI chief. “The Appointment Committee of the Cabinet has, based on the panel recommended by the Committee, approved the appointment of Shri Subodh Kumar Jaiswal, IPS(MH:1985) as Director, Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) for a period of two years from the date of assumption of charge of the office or untill further orders whichever is earlier,” said the order issued by the government.
Earlier on Monday, when the three-member high-powered selection committee comprising of PM Narendra Modi, CJO NV Ramana and Leader of Opposition Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury met, two top choices of the government – 1984-batch officers YC Modi and Rakesh Asthana, were knocked out of contention for the post. YC Modi belongs to the Assam-Meghalaya cadre and is currently heading the NIA while Asthana to the Gujarat cadre and is presently heading BSF. They were eliminated from the race after Chief Justice of India NV Ramana used the ‘rule of law’ as ruled by the Supreme Court in the Prakash Singh case of March 2019, where it said that no officer with less than six months to retirement should be appointed as police chief.
The CJI was firm on his stance and Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury also backed him, making it a majority opinion in the three-member panel, to this PM Modi agreed.
Who is Subodh Kumar Jaiswal?
Subodh Kumar Jaiswal was born on September 22, 1962, in Dhanbad (now in Jharkhand) and did his schooling from the CMRI branch of the De Nobili School. He graduated in English from DAV College in Chandigarh and did an MBA from Panjab University. He cleared the prestigious Indian Police Service exam conducted by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) and joined the service in 1985 at the age of 23. He was first allotted the Maharashtra cadre.
So far, Jaiswal has kept a low profile while working in various capacities in Maharashtra before joining the central deputation. He has over 35 years of experience in the field.
His first posting came in 1986 as an Additional Superintendent of Police of Amravati in Maharashtra. He conducted several successful anti-Naxal operations as the Superintendent of Police in the Gadchiroli district. He also headed a Special Investigation Team (SIT) constituted by the High Court in 2003 to probe a multi-crore fake stamp paper scam run by Abdul Karim Telgi, the case which was later handed over to the CBI.
He also worked with the Mumbai Anti-Terrorism Squad and was a part of the team that investigated the 2006 Malegaon bombings.
While he has not worked with the CBI, he served in the Special Protection Group (SPG) that looks after the prime minister’s security. He also worked with the Intelligence Bureau (IB) and the Research and Analysis Wing (R&AW).
The Devendra Fadnavis-led Maharashtra government brought him back in the state in 2018 as the Police Commissioner of Mumbai. In 2019, he was elevated as Maharashtra’s Director General of Police (DGP). The Elgaar Parishad and Bhima Koregaon violence cases were being investigated under his supervision before being transferred to the CBI in 2020.
If reports are to be believed, his tenure as Maharashtra DGP was not smooth after the MVA government led by Uddhav Thackeray assumed power in the state. He had been opposed to the lobbying by the officers for postings with former Maharashtra home minister Anil Deshmukh, who is now also being probed by the CBI. Now, Jaiswal will head the investigation.
Due to various other disagreements with the state government, Jaiswal sought central deputation last year and joined the CISF in December 2020.