New Delhi: CBI chief Alok Verma, who has divested him of his powers and sent on indefinite leave by the government, has been reinstated by the Supreme Court on Tuesday.

The Apex court, while cancelling the government’s order of removing Verma, said, “The legislative intent of insulating the CBI director is manifest.” The court also said that the government should have referred to the Select Committee consisting of the Chief Justice of India, Prime Minister and Leader of Opposition before removing Verma.

Verma can now return to his office but he will not be able to take part in any major decision making policy. His tenure, however, ends on January 31, 2019. 

Grabbing the opportunity, the Congress lashed out at the BJP-led government. They tweeted that they welcome the Supreme Court’s verdict against “illegal” removal of Verma.

On October 23, Verma and his deputy Rakesh Asthana were sent on indefinite leave by the Central Vigilance Commission, following a long-drawn feud over corruption allegations.

CBI filed an FIR against Asthana for allegedly accepting a bribe from a businessman, who was related to controversial meat exporter Moin Akhtar Qureshi case. Asthana was heading the Special Investigation Team (SIT) that was probing Qureshi's case.

On December 6, a bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi reserved the judgment after hearing arguments on behalf of Verma, the Centre, the Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) and others.