Italian PM rattled by death provision? Calls Khurshid

Italian marines
New Delhi, April 5: Why did Italy's Prime Minister Mario Monti, who also holds the portfolio of his country's foreign ministry, today call External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid? Monti may have raised the issue of death sentence. India had given assurance (Khurshid himself) that the Italian marines would not be sentenced to death, if convicted.

The National Investigation Agency (NIA) has registered a murder case against two Italian marines and one section deals with death sentence.

The marines, Massimiliano Latore and Salvatore Girone, are facing trial for allegedly killing Indian fishermen.

Italian Deputy Foreign Minister Staffan de Mistura also met Khurshid today to discuss developments in the case.

The Home Ministry had handed over the case to the NIA through an order last evening. The NIA submitted the FIR before the Special NIA court today.

The NIA has booked the marines under sections 302 (Murder), 307 (Attempt to murder), 427 (mischief) along with section 34 (Common intent) of IPC.

They have also been booked under the Suppression of Unlawful Acts Against Safety of Maritime Navigation and Fixed Platforms on Continental Shelf Act, 2002.

The law deals with cargo ships, maritime navigational facilities whose personnel indulge in offences committed in sea.

The maximum penalty under this section is death in case the action by those onboard has resulted in killing.

The agency's case is that fishermen Jelastin and Pinku were shot dead by the two marines onboard 'Enrica Lexie'--an Italian ship, 31 Nautical miles from North-West of Neendakara Costal Police Station, in Arabian Sea on February 15, 2012.

The apex court on January 18 had said that the marines be shifted to Delhi and be under its 'custody' till the Centre constitutes a special court to hold their trial.

OneIndia News

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