In a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, a Deputy Superintendent of Police of the CBI has accused a Joint Director-ranked officer of being involved in a fake encounter, a charge refuted by the agency on Friday saying "no such evidence has surfaced in the probe".
In the letter, also marked to CBI Director RK Shukla and the Central Vigilance Commission (CVC), Deputy SP NP Mishra alleged that Joint Director (Admin) AK Bhatnagar was "grossly involved in... a fake encounter of 14 innocent persons in Jharkhand".
He also alleged that Amit Kumar Bhatnagar was influencing the probe by virtue of his high placement in the organisation. The accusations were denied by the CBI on Friday with sources claiming that agency has taken "cognisance of the letter".
In a statement, probe agency's spokesperson said the encounter case was registered by the CBI in compliance to the orders dated October 22, 2018 of the High Court of Jharkhand at Ranchi relating to attack and firing by CPI (Maoist) on police personnel with intention to kill them.
"The matter is under investigation. Till now, no evidence has surfaced during the investigation conducted so far against AK Bhatnagar, the then Inspector General, Jharkhand police," the spokesperson said.
Mr Mishra, who was part of a team that probed the Ishrat Jahan "fake encounter" case, was transferred to Visakhapatnam in November 2018 when the tussle between the then agency director Alok Verma and his deputy Rakesh Asthana was at its peak, sources told news agency Press Trust of India.
The Deputy Superintendent of Police took a stay on his transfer from the Delhi High Court, the hearing for which is about to come up October 1, they said. His transfer was ordered before Mr Bhatnagar took over as the joint director (administration).
After taking over, Mr Bhatnagar had moved a proposal to transfer all employees who have spent a considerable period at a given station of posting, they said, adding the probe agency has started its policy of transferring staff as part of rotation from September 20 this year.
A CBI official said, "The letter addressed to the prime minister and marked to other government functionaries is an attempt to disrupt the transfer policy by rotating policy. As per civil services conduct rule, an officer cannot directly write a letter to the prime minister."