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Law Enforcement Agencies - By Isha

 Law Enforcement Agencies – By Isha


The backbone of every civilized society are law enforcement agencies. The main work of these agencies is to provide safety and security to the people. 

There are various law enforcement agencies in India, of which some are under the Central Government while some are under the State Government. Some of them are CBI, RAW, National Investigation Agency (NIA), BSF, NSG etc.

The word investigation means “systematic finding of facts and reporting process and step by step enquiry.”

The three main Central Investigating Agencies are:

  1.  Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB)

  • It was established in the year 1986. 

  • The headquarters of NCB are situated in Delhi. 

  • It is affiliated with the Ministry of Home Affairs.

  • The current Chief of NCB is Satya Narayan Pradhan.

  • This agency was formed to fulfill the objectives of NDPS Act (Narcotics Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act) , 1985. The objectives of this are also mentioned in Article 47 of the Constitution of India, which gives the responsibility of prohibiting illegal drugs and drinks to the State Government.

  • According to the report of AIMS 2019, there are more than 5 Crore people in India who have consumed cannabis and opium and Punjab, Assam, Sikkim, Delhi and UP are among the top drugs consuming states.

The initiatives of the Government for drug abuse aim at two main things:

Education- Like sex education, there should be awareness regarding drug abuse because  children are the main victims of drug abuse.

Counselling – Victims of drug abuse needs to get proper guidance and counselling regarding the ill effects of consuming drugs.  

Powers and Functions of NCB 

  1. NCB works with

  • Central Economic Intelligence Bureau

  • Customs and Central Excise 

  • CBI

  • State Police Departments

  • Other Intelligence and law enforcement agencies

India is signatory to various UN conventions

  • 1961- UN Convention on Narcotic Drugs

  • 1971- UN Convention on Psychotropic Substances

  • 1988- UN Convention Against Illicit Traffic in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances

  • 2000- Transnational crime convention

  1. Crime Investigation Bureau (CBI)

It is the main law enforcement agency of the central government. CBI is the investigating agency with a prime focus on the investigation related to corruption. It deals with crimes of serious nature which have national or international importance but on the request of the State Government CBI can investigate those cases which have public importance.


  • After Second World War, to investigate the cases of corruption special police was established.

  • Then Santhanam Committee on Prevention of Corruption was constituted which recommended the establishment of the CBI.

  • CBI was founded by D.P Kohli who served as its director from 1963-1968.

  • The current Chief of CBI is Subodh Kumar Jaiswal.

  • It’s headquarters are situated in Delhi.

  • Earlier it was under the Ministry of Home Affairs, but now it is under the Ministry of Personnel and Training.

  • CBI is exempted from the ambit of RBI.

  •  CBI which acts as National Central Bureau is the touchpoint of Interpol which is responsible for Crime Control worldwide.

Structure of CBI

  • CBI being affiliated to the Ministry of Personnel and Training comes under the Prime Minister’s Office  (PMO) but when it deal in matters of Prevention of Corruption Act then it comes under the Central Vigilance Commission.

  • CBI has three main divisions

    • Economic Offences Division

    • Anti Corruption Division

    • Special Crime Division

Appointment Committee of CBI

It constitute of

  • Prime Minister

  • Chief Justice of India or any other judge recommended by CJI

  • Leader of Opposition/ Leader of Single Largest Part of Lok Sabha

Main problem of CBI

CBI has a very important role in the criminal justice system of India. But the main problem of CBI is its autonomy and independence.

In the case of Vineeta Narayan vs Union of India (1997) Supreme court has questioned the autonomy of the CBI.

This case was related to the Hawala Scam in which many high ranking officials and bureaucrats were charged of corruption and bribery.

It was stated in this case that “No investigation was done against Government’s extremely influential people.

Hence the Supreme Court stated that

“ CBI has failed in its responsibility to investigate allegations of public corruption

Further, court issued guidelines to ensure CBI’s autonomy and put it under CVC for supervision.

Enforcement Directorate  (ED)

  • ED is India’s main economic investigating agency.

  • It is affiliated to Department of Revenue which comes under the Ministry of Finance.

  • It’s headquarters are situated in Delhi.

  • It’s current Chief is Sanjay Kumar Mishra.

  • It’s main work is to enforce the provisions of these laws:

  • FEMA ( Foreign Exchange Management Act) – It deals with exchange control laws. ED has the power under this Act to impose upto 3 times penalty of the amount involved in a scam.

  • PMLA ( Prevention of Money Laundering Act)- It deals with money laundering cases. Ed has the right under this Act to attach and cease the property. 

  • FEO (Fugitive Economic Offenders Act)


History of ED

  • In 1947, under the Foreign Exchange Regulation Act (FERA) and to control exchange control law violation, a body was formed under the Department of Economic Affairs known as Enforcement Unit which was renamed as Enforcement Directorate in 1957 and it was transferred from department of Sconomic Affairs to Department of Revenue under the Ministry of Finance.

Leading Cases of ED

  • INX Media Scam charged P. Chidambaram – It was investigated by CBI and ED jointly.

  • 2G Scam

  • Yes Bank Scam

  • Mumbai Airport Development Scam



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