The founder director of the CBI was Shri D.P. Kohli who held office from 1st April, 1963 to 31st May, 1968. Before this, he was Inspector-General of Police of the Special Police Establishment from 1955 to 1963. Before that he held responsible positions in police in Madhya Bharat, Uttar Pradesh and Govt. of India. He was Police Chief in Madhya Bharat before joining the SPE. Shri Kohli was awarded 'Padma Bhushan' in 1967 for his distinguished services.As the CBI, over the years, established a reputation for impartiality and competence, demands were made on it to take up investigation of more cases of conventional crime such as murder, kidnapping, terrorist crime, etc. Apart from this, even the Supreme court and the various High Courts of the country also started entrusting such cases for investigation to the CBI on petitions filed by aggrieved parties. Taking into account the fact that several cases falling under this category were being taken up for investigation by the CBI, it was found expedient to entrust such cases to the Branches having local jurisdiction.
Shri Kohli was a visionasry who saw in the Special Police Establishment the potential of growing into the national investigative agency. He nurtured the organisation during his long stint as Inspector General and as Director and laid the solid foundation on which the organisation grew over the decades to become what it is today.
While inaugurating the 4th Biennial Joint Conference of the CBI and State Anti-Corruption Officers, Shri Kohli told the delegates: "The public expects the highest standard from you both in efficiency and integrity. That faith has to be sustained. The motto of the CBI - Industry, Impartiality and Integrity: these must always guide your work. Loyalty to duty must come first, everywhere, at all times and in all circumstances."