UAE court gives life term to Indian

Jitendra Malhotra was awarded life imprisonment for killing 31-year old Indian sailor Sudheer in February.

india Updated: Jun 12, 2006 22:50 IST

A court in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has sentenced an Indian ship captain to life imprisonment while giving five-year jail terms to five other crewmembers for the killing of a 31-year old Indian sailor in February.

Reports said the captain of Norwegian oil tanker Champion Pioneer, Jitendra Malhotra, and five other crewmembers were given the punishment on Sunday by a Fujairah (the mountainous emirate of UAE) court on charges of beating Sudheer Nonia Jagannathan to death on board the ship on February 6.

The murder reportedly took place when the ship was in international waters off the coast of Fujairah. It was coming from New Mangalore Port in Karnataka to dock at Fujairah port. The deceased was working as a fitter in the vessel.the matter.

However, representatives of the Indian consulate were present in the court when the court pronounced the verdict.

According to a report in the Khaleej Times newspaper, the Indian consulate in Dubai requested the local authorities to shift the case to India as all the accused and the victim were Indians, but the UAE court claimed jurisdiction over

The families of the crewmembers had submitted a pardon letter from the victim's family, but it was not taken into consideration by the court as it was not attested and certified by the local authorities in India. The family of the convicted crewmembers will now reportedly file an appeal.

First Published: Jun 12, 2006 18:08 IST