New Delhi: A Rajya Sabha constituted panel against Chief Justice of the Sikkim High Court Justice P D Dinkaran, has slapped sixteen charges of corruption and irregularities against him. Justice Dinkaran is facing impeachment proceedings in Parliament.

The committee comprising Supreme Court Justice Aftab Alam, Karnataka High Court Justice K S Khehar and eminent jurist P P Roy issued the chargesheet to Dinakaran on March 16, seeking his response by April 9.

The charges against him included possession of wealth disproportionate to his known sources of income, illegal encroachment on public property and land belonging to Dalits
and other weaker sections, five Tamil Nadu Housing Board plots in favour of 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.

Besides, 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 is also accused of adopting illegal transfers of judges and appointments of staff, sources said.

Dinakaran has been granted the liberty to engage a lawyer of his choice to defend himself.

Justice Dinakaran was recommended for appointment as a Supreme Court judge in August 2009 but the move was stalled following the allegations against him.

The Rajya Sabha admitted the motion for Dinakaran's removal on December 17, 2009 following which Rajya Sabha Chairman Hamid Ansari constituted the panel to probe the allegations.

Initially, another Supreme Court Judge V S Sirpurkar was appointed to head the panel but he was forced to recuse after the Madras Bar Association and various lawyers forum sought his recusal on the ground that he had worked with Justice Dinakaran in the Madras High Court.

Slapping the charges against Dinakaran, the Upper House panel took into consideration various documents furnished by the Income Tax department and Tamil Nadu government to justify the allegations against him.

(Agencies)