Sitting chief justice of the Sikkim high court PD Dinakaran on Tuesday petitioned the Supreme Court challenging the constitution of three-member Rajya Sabha appointed inquiry panel that is holding impeachment proceedings against him.
The panel headed by Supreme Court judge justice Aftab Alam is conducting an inquiry into the allegations accusing justice Dinakaran of land grabbing and amassing wealth disproportionate to his known sources of income.
The beleaguered judge has requested SC to quash the order appointing the panel that has refused to accept his plea to replace senior advocate PP Rao. Justice Dinakaran wanted Rao to recuse himself as a member of the committee on the ground that he had led a delegation before former chief justice of India KG Balakrishnan in 2009 and opposed the judge's elevation to SC. The chief justice claimed Rao was biased against him.
In his petition, justice Dinakaran said he apprehended the proceedings before the panel would not proceed fairly as Rao was party to the campaign against his elevation. He said the panel’s decision rejecting his plea was in violation of natural justice.
"If there is reasonable likelihood of bias it is in accordance with natural justice and common sense that the judge likely to be so biased should be incapacitated from sitting. The basic principle underlying the rule is that justice must not only be done but must also appear to be done," the petition said.
The panel had on April 24 rejected Dinakaran's plea against Rao, saying the objection should have been raised when the proceedings began.