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Homechevron_rightKeralachevron_rightState to seek legal...

State to seek legal option in marines' case

State to seek legal option in marines case

Thiruvananthapuram: Terming as unacceptable Italy's decision not to send its two marines back to India to face trial for allegedly killing two fishermen, Chief Minister Oommen Chandy today said Kerala would explore legal options to ensure justice to the kin of the deceased fishermen.

"Italy's decision is not at all acceptable. It has always been the firm position of the state that the marines have committed a criminal offence within Indian borders and they should be tried in India under the Indian laws," Chandy said after a cabinet meeting where the latest developments figured.

The state had maintained this position at all stages of the case, Chandy said.

The state had opposed the proposal to allow the marines to visit Italy during Christmas and suggested that their family members could join them in Kerala since the accused had been on bail by that time, he said.

Kerala had also objected to the bail conditions with the Italian Ambassdaor as guarantor citing that the envoy could avoid facing legal action in the event of the marines not returning since he enjoyed diplomatic immunity, he contended.

To a question, Chandy said he did not think that the Centre was responsible for the present twist in the case since the Union Government had always backed the state in the case.

The chief minister said he had already faxed letters to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid expressing the state's anguish over Italy's decision.

Chandy, who will be leaving for Delhi this evening, said he would discuss the matter with the state's counsel to explore legal possibilities for getting the marines back to India for completing the trial.

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