The timing of arrest of former Minister in the Mayawati government Babu Singh Kushwaha is bound to raise some uncomfortable questions. His arrest soon after the completion of elections in Uttar Pradesh proves that the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) was waiting for the right opportunity. This cannot be mere coincidence.  Why couldn’t the CBI avoid such a circumstance and refrain from sending out a wrong message to the people? If Kushwaha’s arrest was so significant, why was he arrested soon after the completion of the elections and not before it? If UP had not gone to the polls, would Kushwaha have been arrested long before? These are some questions which require immediate answers otherwise the CBI would lose its sheen. The fact remains that the CBI’s success rate in initiating action and bringing corrupt officials to book has been miserable. The premier investigative body has to do a lot of thinking in this regard. In fact the onus lies on the Centre to answer the critics.

No matter how tall claims the Centre makes about the CBI as an independent body, but the recent incident of Kushwaha’s arrest speaks something else.  The CBI in many cases becomes handicapped and looks up to the government for assistance. Kushwaha’s arrest in the NRHM scam was obvious but it shouldn’t have been for political gains. So, the objections raised by the BJP over the arrest are genuine, but it will hardly hold any importance as Kushwaha was the Family Welfare Minister when the NRHM scam took place. Though Kushwaha may claim the involvement of some other ministers as well in the scam, this does not prove his innocence. This is the first high-profile arrest in the scam so far. When the others involved in the scam will be arrested is a big question. Though the CBI has shown some agility in the investigations, it is difficult to say when they will bring the culprits to book.