New Delhi: The government on Thursday named Radha Vinod Raju, an officer of the Indian Police Service, or IPS, as head of the newly set up National Investigation Agency, or NIA—an omnibus agency to fight terror, on the lines of US Federal Bureau of Investigation.
Addressing a press conference, home minister P. Chidambaram said Raju would help the government frame rules and regulations relating to appointments to NIA. “He will help us handpick the best investigators to staff the new agency,” he said.
Fighting terror: Home minister P. Chidambaram says Raju will help the Centre handpick the best investigators to staff the new agency. Vijay Kumar Joshi / PTI
Chidambaram also said that as of now there were no cases for the agency. Asked whether the cases relating to the Mumbai terror attacks in November would be handed over to NIA, he said these would continue to be investigated by the Mumbai police. “The Mumbai terror attack investigations are well on track and there is no need to transfer them to the NIA.”
Raju, who belongs to the 1975 batch of IPS, was a key member of the police team that investigated the 1991 assassination of former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi. He is presently director general of the Jammu and Kashmir state vigilance organization.
Meanwhile, the cabinet committee on economic affairs (CCEA), which met in New Delhi on Thursday, approved a proposal to consider crop insurance premium and marketing and transportation costs incurred by farmers while fixing the minimum support price of crops. It also approved the continuation of water resources development schemes during the 11th Plan with an outlay of Rs222.80 crore and four-laning of highways in Andhra Pradesh and Kerala with an outlay of Rs2,440 crore.
The Union cabinet, in its weekly meeting on Thursday, gave the nod for the revision of pay scales of heads and members of Union Public Service Commission and Central Vigilance Commission. The new scales have been approved in light of the Sixth Pay Commission recommendations.
The cabinet also approved an external affairs ministry proposal to sign an agreement with Macedonia exempting diplomatic passport holders from visa requirements.
(‘PTI’ contributed to this story.)