Rajya Sabha MP Kapil Sibal on Wednesday took a swipe at Home Minister Amit Shah over his remarks that it is not important who the director of the Enforcement Directorate is, asking why did the government then give a third extension to the probe agency's chief Sanjay Kumar Mishra.
Sibal's remarks came a day after the Supreme Court held as "illegal" two successive extensions of one year each granted to Enforcement Directorate chief Mishra, ruling that the Centre's orders were in "breach" of its mandamus in its 2021 verdict that the IRS officer should not be given further term.
After the Supreme Court ruling, Shah said who the ED director is not important because whoever assumes this role will take note of the rampant corruption of a cozy club of entitled dynasts who have an anti-development mindset.
In a tweet, Sibal said, "Sanjay Mishra (ED) Chief. Supreme Court held extension till November invalid. Amit Shah: 'ED is an institution which rises beyond any one individual...' Then why did you give him a 3rd extension?"
"Some individuals serve the political interests of the party in power!" the senior advocate and former Union minister said. The order of the top court in which it also curtailed Mishra's extended tenure to July 31 came as a setback to the Centre, even as it upheld the amendments under which a maximum of five-year tenure can be given to directors of the ED and the Central Bureau of Investigation(CBI).
The amendments were made to the Central Vigilance Commission (Amendment) Act, 2021 and the Delhi Special Police Establishment (Amendment) Act, 2021 as well as to the Fundamental (Amendment) Rules, 2021.
Mishra, 62, was first appointed the ED director for two years on November 19, 2018. Later, by an order dated November 13, 2020, the central government modified the appointment letter retrospectively and his two-year term was changed to three years.