New Delhi: Describing the CBI as a “caged bird or the Congress Bureau of Investigation” is incorrect, Finance Minister P. Chidambaram said Tuesday, rejecting allegations of the central government’s interference in the investigative agency’s working.

“There are several myths about the CBI, ranging from the celebrated epithet ‘caged bird’ to the abusive nomenclature ‘Congress Bureau of Investigation’. None of the descriptions is correct or even well meaning,” said Chidambaram.

Speaking at the Central Bureau of Investigation’s (CBI) international conference on ‘Evolving Common Strategies to Combat Corruption and Crime’, the finance minister said: “Some myths are carefully fostered and propagated in order to serve an immediate or narrow self-interest.”

“In lighter vain, I may say that sometimes the CBI itself pretends to be a helpless victim when it pleads for powers and greater autonomy,” he said.

Lauding the work of CBI, however, Chidambaram said: “In my view, the CBI is as good an investigation organisation as any other in the world. We are proud of the achievements of the CBI.”

In May this year, the Supreme Court had termed the CBI a “caged parrot” that “speaks in its master’s voice” in a case related to the irregularities in the coal block allocation.

CBI director Ranjit Sinha’s affidavit had stated that then law minister Ashwani Kumar and senior officials of the Prime Minister’s Office and the coal ministry had vetted a CBI report on the coal block allocation before it was submitted to the apex court.

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