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Corruption allegations halt Chief Justice SC appointment

Karnataka Chief Justice P D Dinakaran elevation to the Supreme Court has been called into question following protests by eminent lawyers over his unaccountable ownership of 400 acres of land in rural Tamil Nadu.

The Chief Justice of India has sought an explanation from Justice Dinakaran acting on a letter submitted by prominent lawyers such as Shanti Bhushan, Fali Nariman, Anil Divan, Ashok Desai and Ram Jethmalani in which they demanded his promotion to be deferred.

Fali Nariman declined to comment when contacted by Legally India, saying that this matter could only be resolved by a sitting judge of the Supreme Court.

President of the Supreme Court Bar Association M N Krishnamani and the Delhi High Court Bar Association President K C Mittal in a joint statement demanded a change in the existing collegiums system of appointment of judges.

The bar associations have urged the Law Ministry to increase transparency and objectivity in the promotion of judges to the Supreme Court.

They have proposed a constitutional amendment to replace the collegiums system by a properly constituted National Judicial Commission to undertake the selection.

Madras High Court bar association members who have opposed Justice Dinakaran’s promotion include K R Tamizhmani, R Vaigai, Sriram Panchu, Anna Mathew, S S Vasudevan, Geetha Ramaseshan, Sudha Ramalingam, N L Rajah, D Nagasaila, S Devikarani and T Mohan.

As reported by the Times of India, the collegiums headed by the Chief Justice of India and Justice S H Kapadia, B N Agrawal, Tarun Chatterjee and Altamas Kabir will meet tomorrow to discuss on the future course of action.

Under the present collegiums system the CJI is the final authority in the matter of appointments superseding the executive also.

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