Italian Marines case: Home ministry asks NIA to dilute charges

File Photo
File Photo

New Delhi, Feb 7 (PTI): In an U-turn in Kerala fishermen killing case, the Union Home Ministry today asked NIA to dilute the charges against the two accused Italian marines from murder to violence, thus sparing them from the possibility of getting death penalty.

Revising its earlier decision, the Home Ministry gave sanction to National Investigation Agency (NIA) to prosecute the Italian marines under the new provision of the Suppression of Unlawful Acts against safety of Maritime Navigation And Fixed Platforms on Continental Shelf Act (SUA).

The provision [3.1.(a)] says whoever unlawfully and intentionally commits an act of violence against a person on board a fixed platform or a ship which is likely to endanger the safety of the fixed platform or, as the case may be, safe navigation of the ship shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to ten years and shall also be liable to fine.

Earlier, the Home Ministry had sanctioned this case under Section 3 (G) (i) of SUA which says anyone causing death to any person shall be punished with death.

The decision, sources said, will be conveyed to the Supreme Court on Monday as promised by the government.

The decision is expected to be a huge relief to Italian goverment which has been strongly opposing the decision of slapping the stringet provision which invites death of the accused if proved guilty.

NIA has sought sanction to prosecute the two marines — Massimiliano Latorre and Salvatore Girone — under SUA.

The Marines, who were on-board Italian vessel ‘Enrica Lexie’ and are now lodged in New Delhi’s Italian Embassy premises, allegedly shot dead the two fishermen on February 15, 2012 off Kerala coast.

NIA had completed its probe after questioning witnesses, including four Italian marines, through video conferencing after their refusal to come to India.

The Supreme Court had shifted the case to Delhi, saying Kerala Police have no jurisdiction over it and backed the government’s decision to hand over the case to NIA.


  1. ‘The charge sought by Indian authorities is unacceptable…Italy and the European Union will react’ threatens Italy’s prime minister.
    Are Italy and the European Union run by the Italian mafia? Is India, too, run by the Italian mafia (amongst other mafias)? Stupid questions, I suppose, in view of the light just beamed on the subject by the Italian premier who is blackmailing Indian
    authorities into according special treatment to Italian Marines accused of cold-blooded murder of Indian fishermen.
    If we, the citizens of India, place any value on the words contained in the Preamble of our Constitution viz. Justice, Liberty, Equality, Fraternity then we ought to elect leaders who have demonstrated willingness and capacity to ensure that those constitutional promises in the Preamble do not remain simply words inked in the Constitution. We must also remove from positions of influence all those who have demonstrated willingness and capacity to place greedy interests of their family/party/community and those of top businessmen and foreign investors before Justice, Liberty, Equality, Fraternity of the vast majority of India’s citizens.
    The evolution of the Italian Marines case is clear evidence of how India’s willful dependence on foreign investment/military hardware & software and their attendant ‘fringe benefits’ (ref. the Euro-U.S. Agusta Copter scam involving The FAMILY, and their key advisors) has threatened time and again what every human being holds dearest to his heart: his Right to Life, something guaranteed to the citizens of India, too, by the makers of their Constitution (which The People’s Representatives are constantly forgetting).
    India’s judiciary must end legitimization of the practice of apartheid and homicide by its own and foreign governments. India’s policy makers must work towards self-sufficiency of the nation and prioritize regional co-operation over
    European Union-British Commonwealth-United Nations bhai-bhai. That would no
    doubt strengthen India, India’s Constitution and India’s people.
    Surely we have a few good, well-intentioned men still in positions of influence
    who have the courage to stand up for their country (i.e. India) and
    countrymen (i.e. Indians), or is everybody in awe of Godfathers and Godmothers?


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