- CBI chief Alok Verma and deputy Rakesh Asthana sent on "compulsory leave"
- Nageswar Rao, a 1986 batch IPS officer, was joint director of the CBI
- Mr Rao is a chemistry post-graduate from Osmania University
M Nageswar Rao took temporary charge of the CBI or Central Bureau of Investigation in the early hours of Wednesday after the government, in a late-night move, sent the top two officers of the agency, director Alok Verma and his deputy Rakesh Asthana, on "compulsory leave".
Nageswar Rao will "look after duties and functions of director CBI and shall take over the duties and functions with immediate effect," said the order by an appointments committee led by the Prime Minister.
Nageswar Rao, an Indian Police Service (IPS) officer of the 1986 batch, joined the CBI in 2016. He was the joint director before his stunning leap as interim director at a time the country's top investigating agency is facing its worst crisis.
The offices of both Alok Verma and Rakesh Asthana have been sealed and all officers working with the CBI director have been sent on leave. The agency also raided its own; all the offices were being searched on Wednesday.
Mr Rao is from Warangal in Telangana. A chemistry post-graduate from Osmania University, he did research in Madras IIT before joining the IPS.
Mr Rao, say sources, is reputed to be a tough cop and decorated administrator. He earned accolades for his handling of his first posting in Odisha's Talcher, notorious for coal smuggling.
He was also credited with effective anti-insurgency operations in Manipur.
According to reports, he was the first officer in Odisha to use DNA fingerprinting to solve a rape case.
He also worked as Additional Director General of Police (Railways), Orissa.