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Jan 18, 2013 at 01:54pm IST

Fishermen deaths: Special court under CJI will try Italian marines, says SC

New Delhi: In a major setback for the two Italian marines accused of shooting dead two Kerala fishermen in February last year, the Supreme Court on Friday said that the duo will be tried in a special court under the Chief Justice of India.

The apex court said that the Kerala government had no jurisdiction to try the marines but the Union government did.

The court said that the government will set up the special court after consulting the CJI. The Kerala government welcomed the order.

Italy has been pressing India for the early release of the two marines who have been charged with the killing of fishermen Ajesh Binki and Jelastine off Alapzuha coast. The marines, who were onboard Italian merchant vessel Enrica Lexie, have maintained that they opened fire on the fishermen mistaking them for pirates.

The incident had led to a diplomatic row between the two nations.

With additional information from PTI