New Delhi: Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge moved the Supreme Court challenging Centre’s decision asking Alok Verma to go on leave pending Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) inquiry. Also Read - Rahul Gandhi Incited Farmers, Tricolour Was Insulted At The Red Fort: BJP On Tractor Rally Violence

Standing out in full support of Verma, who has been divested of all his duties amid the crisis, Kharge argued that neither the CVC nor the government can curtain Verma’s tenure. In his application, the Congress leader has termed the government’s move as “arbitrary and illegal”. Also Read - Tractor Rally Violence: Congress Calls Amit Shah 'Weakest Home Minister of India', Demands His Removal

Kharge said, “Filed a petition before SC requesting them to quash the order of Centre because it’s illegal and not only illegal they should’ve called a meeting of all 3-PM, CJI & me. Without the meeting, without committee’s consent, they overnight asked him (CBI Director) to go on leave indefinitely.” Also Read - Tandav Row: Supreme Court Rejects Interim Protection, Makers Say 'So-Called Religious Content Removed'

The petition by Kharge comes amid Congress allegations that Verma was removed from the post as he wanted to investigate the Rafale fighter jet deal. Congress President Rahul Gandhi had alleged that French firm Dassault Aviation paid Rs 284 crore as “the first instalment” to Anil Ambani’s company.

However, Anil Ambani’s Reliance Group rejected Gandhi’s charges as implicated and said his company was being continuously dragged into a controversy because of the upcoming polls.

Verma and his deputy Special Director Rakesh Asthana were stripped of their powers and sent on leave by the government last month. The Supreme Court has set a two-week deadline for the CVC to complete the inquiry against Verma.

The court has directed that the inquiry be conducted under retired SC judge.