Dinakaran seeks Rao`s recusal, slams RS appointed panel

Sikkim Chief Justice PD Dinakaran, facing impeachment proceedings for alleged misconduct, sought recusal of senior advocate PP Rao from the three-member Rajya Sabha appointed inquiry panel on the ground that he was biased.

Last Updated: Apr 20, 2011, 22:11 PM IST

New Delhi: Sikkim Chief Justice PD
Dinakaran, facing impeachment proceedings for alleged
misconduct, today sought recusal of senior advocate PP Rao
from the three-member Rajya Sabha appointed inquiry panel on
the ground that he was biased.

Justice Dinakaran also in his reply to the chargesheet
framed against him submitted through counsel Nitin Mesharam
said that the panel has "exceeded the jurisdiction" and was
acting in an "unconstitutional" manner by levelling
allegations that had no nexus to the discharge of his judicial
and administrative duties.

According to the beleaguered judge, the panel was
acting in contravention of Article 124 and 121 by raking up
personal issues against the judge and his family although the
said Constitutional provisions expressly barred any such
reference of a high court or Supreme Court judge`s personal
life.

Further, counsel Mesharam sought recusal of PP Rao
from the committee on the ground that he was one of the
members of a delegation which in 2009 had met the then Chief
Justice of India KG Balakrishnan to oppose Justice
Dinakaran`s elevation to the Supreme Court.

The committee, comprising Justice Aftab Alam of the
Supreme Court, Karnataka High Court Chief Justice JS Khehar
and senior advocate P P Rao, has asked Dinakaran to respond to
the sixteen charges framed against him by April 20. The panel
was appointed by Rajya Sabha chairperson Hamid Ansari
after the house initiated impeachment motion against him.

The committee, which issued the charge sheet to
Dinakaran in March and asked him to respond by April 9, has
made it clear that it will commence the hearing in the matter
on April 25 and will not give any further adjournment.

The charges against Justice Dinakaran, who is facing
impeachment proceedings in Parliament, include possession of
wealth disproportionate to his known sources of income and
illegal encroachment on public property and land belonging to
Dalits and other weaker sections.

He is also accused of having five Tamil Nadu Housing
Board plots in the name of his wife and two daughters, benami
transactions, acquiring and possessing agricultural holdings
beyond the ceiling fixed by the TN Land Reforms Act 1961,
destruction of evidence, undervaluation of sale agreements,
evasion of stamp duty and illegal constructions.

Justice Dinakaran has also been accused of resorting
to irregular and dishonest administrative actions by fixing
rosters of judges to facilitate dishonest judicial decisions
while he was the Chief Justice of Karnataka High Court. He has
also been charged with undertaking transfers of judges and
appointment of staff illegally, sources said.

PTI