Justice KM Joseph of the Supreme Court while rejecting the pleas seeking review of the Supreme Court’s verdict on Rafale case on Thursday said, the Central Bureau of Investigation, country’s main probe agency, is expected to act “completely independent” of the government of the day and professionalism of “highest quality”, uncompromising independence and neutrality is expected of it.

The apex court judge said this in his separate but concurring judgement that rejected the pleas seeking review of last year’s verdict, which gave a clean chit to the Narendra Modi government in India’s defence deal with France to buy Rafale fighter jets.

“It is quite clear that the first respondent (CBI), the premier investigating agency in the country, is expected to act completely independent of the government of the day. The Government of India cannot speak on behalf of the first respondent (CBI),” he said in his verdict.

The CBI is equipped to undertake all forms of investigations, be it technical or otherwise, he said.

“There can be no dispute that the first respondent is the premier investigating agency in the country which assumedly employs state of the art techniques of investigation,” he said.

Professionalism of the highest quality, which embraces within it, uncompromising independence and neutrality, is expected of it,” Justice Joseph said.

A three-judge bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi gave a clean chit to the Narendra Modi government on the purchase of 36 fully loaded Rafale fighter jets from French company Dassault Aviation by rejecting the pleas seeking review of the December 14, 2018 verdict. In its last year’s judgement, the top court had said that there was no occasion to doubt the decision-making process in the procurement of 36 Rafale fighter jets.