The name of Karnataka high court Chief Justice P D Dinakaran, who is facing allegations of land grabbing, has been "delinked" from four others who have been cleared for elevation as judges of the Supreme Court.
"We have only asked that the names of four other judges should be processed for their appointment as judges of the Supreme Court," Chief Justice of India K G Balakrishnan today told mediapersons on the sidelines of the All-India Conference of the Central Administrative Tribunal.
When asked about media reports that Dinakaran's name has been dropped, the CJI, who at first only replied, "No, no", later said, "We have not taken any decision as yet".
Balakrishnan, who was reluctant to speak to the media, said the decision asking the government to process the names of other four judges means that Dinakaran's name has been "delinked" at this stage for his appointment as a judge of the Supreme Court.
Law Minister M Veerappa Moily said he has received several communications on various issues from many constitutional authorities but he would not like to comment on anything regarding them.
He preferred not to comment on a pointed question that the CJI has gone on record to say that he has written a letter to the Law Ministry on the Dinakaran's issue.
"If he has said.... (pause)," Moily replied.
The move to put on hold Dinakaran's elevation comes amid allegations that the judge has amassed land in Tamil Nadu's Tiruvallur district.
The Supreme Court Collegium had earlier considered a report of the District Collector of Tiruvallur, which is believed to have pointed out that at Kaverirajapuram in Tiruttani taluka alone, the extent of land allegedly possessed by the judge was approximately 500 acres.
Dinakaran has denied the allegations of land grabbing against him.
The five-judge Collegium headed by CJI had earlier cleared along with that of Dinakaran the names of Chief Justice of the Madhya Pradesh high court A K Patnaik, Chief
Justice of the Punjab and Haryana high court T S Thakur, Chief Justice of the Calcutta high court S S Nijjar and Chief Justice of the Gujarat high court K S Radhakrishnan for elevation to the apex court.
The Collegium, which also comprised Justices B N Agarwal (since retired), S S Kapadia and Altamas Kabir, had asked the district collector for his report on the allegations against Dinakaran.
Justice Tarun Chatterjee has joined the Collegium after the retirement of Justice Agrawal last month.Earlier, various representations were made by eminent lawyers, including those from Tamil Nadu, urging the CJI and the government to probe the charges and not to elevate the judge.