It is not too difficult to imagine the beleaguered UPA government thinking of ways to use the CBI to fix its adversaries. The reputation got heightened with the raid on M.K. Stalin’s home, coming as it did soon after the DMK’s withdrawal of support to the government at the Centre. The CBI, on a ritualistic note, clarified in a statement that it had strictly followed procedures and did not intend to target individuals. This was just part of a larger investigation, it said, into a ring that imported luxury foreign cars evading duty. And one of these cars was a Rs 1.4 crore Hummer that had ended up with Stalin’s son, Udayanidhi. But one only needs to read between the lines to get the message. Ex-CBI director Joginder Singh says the agency can conduct raids in a case related to a private person without prior permission, there is no reason for the government to get involved. “So there is no need for political leaders to give any clarification about it,” he told Outlook.
DMK chief Karunanidhi lost no time alleging the raids were retributive. Supreme Court lawyer Kamini Jaiswal is pretty sure the agency has been put to political uses. “There are enough instances to corroborate it,” she says. “They withdraw petitions and submit it arbitrarily as per political equations. Every step of the CBI is so very predictable.”