The Supreme Court on Monday expressed concern on states withdrawing general consent given to the Central Bureau of Investigation in operating on their territories, reported Bar and Bench.

A bench of Justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul and MM Sundresh said that it was not a “desirable position”. It has referred the case to Chief Justice NV Ramana.

Eight states – West Bengal, Maharashtra, Kerala, Punjab, Rajasthan, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh and Mizoram – have withdrawn their consent allowing the central agency to conduct inquiries in their territories. Many of these states have alleged that the Bharatiya Janata Party-led Centre was misusing the agency settle scores against their political opponents.

Without the consent, the agency has to approach the state government on a case-to-case basis, seeking permission to conduct an inquiry.

The YS Jagan Mohan Reddy government had reversed the decision after it was elected to power in Andhra Pradesh.

The Central Bureau of Investigation comes under the Delhi Special Police Establishment Act and requires states to give it general consent to look into allegations against central government employees within a state. This is because the police and public order fall under the purview of state governments, which regularly renew their permission.

The Supreme Court was hearing a plea by the Central Bureau of Investigation against a Jammu and Kashmir High Court order in…

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