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India urges UAE to transfer sailors' case

India has urged the UAE to transfer the case to their home country as the incident occurred in international waters.

india Updated: May 01, 2006 19:00 IST
Press Trust of India
Press Trust of India

India has urged the UAE to transfer a case involving seven Indian sailors, accused of killing a colleague, to their home country as the incident occurred in international waters.

The sailors are currently lodged in Fujairah jail for the death of Sudhir Nonia Jagannath, who died under mysterious circumstances on board a merchant vessel on February 6.

The sailors, including the captain, were arrested after their vessel berthed at Fujariah port and they reported the incident to local authorities.

The ship's captain Jitendra Malhotra and six others were immediately taken into custody. The merchant ship had set sail from New Mangalore Port on January 28 on a multi-destinational voyage with Indian crew on board.

First Secretary at the Indian Embassy Sujit Kumar said the accused could be tried by an Indian court since the victim and the accused were Indians and the ship was sailing in international waters at the time of the incident.

"We have written to the UAE Foreign Office since it would be most convenient and appropriate if the accused were tried in India," Kumar told the Gulf Today newspaper.

During preliminary investigations, the arrested crewmembers told the police that Nonia was under medication for some unexplained illness. They also stated that the deceased, who worked as a fitter, attacked the captain only to be pinned down by the others who tied him up.

First Published: May 01, 2006 19:00 IST