The Supreme Court collegium headed by Chief Justice of India K.G. Balakrishnan on Sunday deferred for the time being its decision with regard to the allegations against Chief Justice of the Karnataka High Court P.D. Dinakaran, whose elevation as judge of the Supreme Court has been put on hold.
The collegium that included Justice S.H. Kapadia, Justice Tarun Chatterjee and Justice R.V. Raveendran after a 90-minute meeting decided to seek the views of the Tamil Nadu government on the report of the Tiruvallur District Collector that Justice Dinakaran had allegedly encroached upon a large extent of government land.
Asked whether he was seeking further particulars from the Tamil Nadu government, the CJI told The Hindu , “We will seek more particulars from whatever sources we want.” He declined to elaborate.
Sources said the Collector in his report was understood to have said that Justice Dinakaran constructed a fence with barbed wire along the patta land. Justice Dinakaran in his reply was understood to have denied this. One of the lawyers’ associations in the Madras High Court was said to have sent a detailed memorandum denying the allegations of land encroachment levelled against Justice Dinakaran by the Forum for Judicial Accountability (FJA) and said that the Collector’s report was false and motivated.
In the light of Justice Dinakaran’s denial and a conflicting petition from a lawyers’ body, the CJI had sought the views of the State government on the Collector’s report.
However, the FJA in its fourth representation to the CJI and the collegium members on Friday had alleged that Justice Dinakaran had acquired property in Udhagamandalam and they were under valued.
Union Law Minister Veerappa Moily told a press conference here that the Centre would not allow the image of the judiciary to be tarnished.
Answering a question with reference to the controversy relating to Justice Dinakaran, Mr. Moily said: “We will not allow the image of the judiciary to be tarnished. The prestige and image of the judiciary will always be kept in mind. This has no connection with any individual.”