A Brief History of CBI


The Central Bureau of Investigation traces its origin to the Special Police Establishment (SPE) which was set up in 1941 by the Government of India. The functions of the SPE then were to investigate cases of bribery and corruption in transactions with the War & Supply Deptt. Of India during World War II. Superintendence of the S.P.E. was vested with the War Department.

Even after the end of the War, the need for a Central Government agency to investigate cases of bribery and corruption by Central Government employees was felt. The Delhi Special Police Establishment Act was therefore brought into force in 1946. This Act transferred the superintendence of the SPE to the Home Department and its functions were enlarged to cover all departments of the Govt. of India. The jurisdiction of the SPE extended to all the Union Territories and could be extended also to the States with the consent of the State Government concerned.

The DSPE acquired its popular current name, Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), through a Home Ministry resolution dated 1.4.1963. Initially the offences that were notified by the Central Government related only to corruption by Central Govt. servants. In due course, with the setting up of a large number of public sector undertakings, the employees of these undertakings were also brought under CBI purview. Similarly, with the nationalisation of the banks in 1969, the Public Sector Banks and their employees also came within the ambit of the CBI.

Founder Director
The founder director of the CBI was Shri D.P. Kohli who held office from 1st April, 1963 to 31st May, 1968. Before this, he was Inspector-General of Police of the Special Police Establishment from 1955 to 1963. Before that he held responsible positions in police in Madhya Bharat, Uttar Pradesh and Govt. of India. He was Police Chief in Madhya Bharat before joining the SPE. Shri Kohli was awarded 'Padma Bhushan' in 1967 for his distinguished services.

Shri Kohli was a visionasry who saw in the Special Police Establishment the potential of growing into the national investigative agency. He nurtured the organisation during his long stint as Inspector General and as Director and laid the solid foundation on which the organisation grew over the decades to become what it is today.

While inaugurating the 4th Biennial Joint Conference of the CBI and State Anti-Corruption Officers, Shri Kohli told the delegates: "The public expects the highest standard from you both in efficiency and integrity. That faith has to be sustained. The motto of the CBI - Industry, Impartiality and Integrity: these must always guide your work. Loyalty to duty must come first, everywhere, at all times and in all circumstances."

Former Directors
Late Sh. D.P.Kohli Sh.F V Arul Sh D.Sen Sh.S N Mathur
Late Sh. D.P.Kohli
01/04/63 - 31/05/68
Sh.F V Arul
31/05/68 - 06/05/71
Sh D.Sen
06/05/71 - 29/03/77
Sh.S N Mathur
29/03/77 - 02/05/77
       
Sh.C V Narsimhan Sh.John Lobo Shri R D Singh Shri J S Bawa
Sh.C V Narsimhan
02/05/77 - 25/11/77
Sh.John Lobo
25/11/77 - 30/06/79
Shri R D Singh
30/06/79 - 24/01/80
Shri J S Bawa
24/01/80 - 28/02/85
       
Late Shri M G Katre Dr A P Mukherjee Shri R Sekhar Shri Vijay Karan
Late Shri M G Katre
28/02/85 - 31/10/89
Dr A P Mukherjee
31/10/89 - 11/01/90
Shri R Sekhar
11/01/90 - 14/12/90
Shri Vijay Karan
14/12/90 - 01/06/92
       
Shri S K Datta Shri K Vijaya Rama Rao Shri Joginder Singh Shri R C Sharma
Shri S K Datta
01/06/92 - 31/07/93
Shri K Vijaya Rama Rao
31/07/93 - 31/07/96
Shri Joginder Singh
31/07/96 - 30/06/97
Shri R C Sharma
30/06/97 - 31/01/98
       
Shri D R Karthikeyan (acting) Dr. T N Mishra (acting) Dr. R.K.Raghavan Shri PC Sharma
Shri D R Karthikeyan(acting)
31/01/98 - 31/03/98
Dr. T N Mishra(acting)
31/03/98 - 04/01/99
Dr. R.K.Raghavan
04/01/99 - 30/04/01
Shri PC Sharma
30/04/01 - 06/12/03
       
Shri U S Misra Shri Vijay Shanker Shri Ashwani Kumar Shri A.P Singh
Shri U S Misra
06/12/03-06/12/05
Shri Vijay Shanker
12/12/05-31/07/08
Shri Ashwani Kumar
02/08/08-30/11/10
Shri A P Singh
30/11/10-30/11/12
       

Emergence As A National Investigative Agency
From 1965 onwards, the CBI has also been entrusted with the investigation of Economic Offences and important conventional crimes such as murders, kidnapping, terrorist crimes, etc., on a selective basis.

The SPE initially had two Wings. They were the General Offences Wing (GOW) and Economic Offences Wing (EOW). The GOW dealt with cases of bribery and corruption involving the employees of Central Government and Public Sector Undertakings. The EOW dealt with cases of violation of various economic/fiscal laws. Under tshis set-up, the GOW had at least one Branch in each State and the EOW in the four metropolitan cities, i.e, Delhi, Madras, Bombay and Calcutta. These EOW Branches dealt with offences reported from the Regions, i.e, each Branch had jurisdiction over several States.

Widening Role
As the CBI, over the years, established a reputation for impartiality and competence, demands were made on it to take up investigation of more cases of conventional crime such as murder, kidnapping, terrorist crime, etc. Apart from this, even the Supreme court and the various High Courts of the country also started entrusting such cases for investigation to the CBI on petitions filed by aggrieved parties. Taking into account the fact that several cases falling under this category were being taken up for investigation by the CBI, it was found expedient to entrust such cases to the Branches having local jurisdiction.

It was therefore decided in 1987 to constitute two investigation divisions in the CBI, namely, Anti-Corruption Division and Special Crimes Division, the latter dealing with cases of conventional crime, besides economic offences.