The CBI has wrapped up probe in about 800 cases in 2020 in spite of the lockdown, sanitation protocols and social-distancing norms announced by the government to contain the spread of the coronavirus. Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) Director RK Shukla, who will relinquish his charge in February, gave this information in his address to agency officers on Friday while greeting them on the occasion of New Year.
Fighting the odds surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, the CBI completed its probe in the Hathras rape case, the Sathankulam custodial death case, bank fraud cases and won a legal battle against fugitive liquor baron Vijay Mallya, who was contesting his extradition proceedings in London, among other success stories, Shukla said.
In his virtual address, the CBI chief underlined that the COVID-related lockdown came as a challenge.
He also asked the supervisory officers of the agency to involve themselves in probes more frequently.
"This will help them to have a first-hand experience of some of the present investigation methods and can further guide their teams to strengthen or further improve the investigation with an objective of accelerating the process," he said.
"Director, CBI also informed that a large number of cases numbering around 800 were disposed of during the year gone by (2020) despite the huge challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, which caused tremendous hurdles in the operations in various walks of life," a statement from CBI Spokesperson Joshi said.
"With your cooperation and efforts, we have been able to finalise investigation of a substantial number of cases to achieve our targets. We need to work hard in the coming days," Shukla said.
The agency chief cited the recently-adjudicated case of Sister Abhaya's murder, in which the conviction came after 28 years despite the severely hampered and complicated case handed over to the CBI.
Recently, a large number of high-value bank fraud cases have been taken up, which marks an emerging challenge to the agency, he said.
Shukla lauded the investigating officers and supervisory officers for exhibiting the true nature of "team CBI" in a relentless pursuit of cases.
He asked the agency officials to keep themselves updated with the latest tools of investigation through sustained training.
The agency has come up with new online training modules as a fallout of the restrictions caused by the coronavirus pandemic.
The CBI director conveyed his condolences to the family members of the agency's officers and staff who succumbed to the fatal viral disease in spite of all possible precautions and assured them of all assistance.
He stressed the need to adhere to the COVID protocols, continue with a periodic sanitisation of workplaces and underlined the importance of frequent testing.Follow our full coverage of the coronavirus pandemic here.