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--------------- Print Magazine --------------
  May 2016
  April 2016


CBI Investigation Who can order?

Nirmal Singh Kahlon v. State of Punjab , AIR 2009 SC 984: (2009) 1 SCC 441

Delhi Special Police Establishment Act, 1946 (Central Act 25 of 1946) is a special statute. By reason of the said enactment, the CBI was constituted. In relation to the matter which was to come within the purview thereof, the CBI could exercise its jurisdiction. The law and order, however, being a State subject, the CBI derives jurisdiction only when a consent therefore is given by the statute. It is, however, now beyond any controversy that the High Court and this Court also direct investigation by the CBI. Our attention has been drawn to the provisions of the CBI Manual, from a perusal whereof it appears that the Director, CBI exercises his power of superintendence in respect of the matters enumerated in Chapter VI of the CBI Manual which includes reference by the State and/ or reference by the High Courts and this Court as also the registration thereof. The reference thereof may be received from the following:

"(a) Prime Minister of India;

(b) Cabinet Ministers of Government of India/Chief Ministers of State Governments or their equivalent;

(c) The State Governments;

(d) Supreme Court/High Courts".

The CBI Manual having been framed by the Union of India, evidently, it has accepted that reference for investigation to the CBI may be made either by this Court or by the High Court. Thus, even assuming that reference had been made by the State Government at the instance of the High Court, the same by itself would not render the investigation carried out by it to be wholly illegal and without jurisdiction as assuming that the reference had been made by the High Court in exercise of its powers under Article 226 of the Constitution of India in a Public Interest Litigation, the same would also be valid.

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