Fishermen killing: Families' loss irreparable


Express News Service , The New Indian Express
Apr 24, 2012 at 11:04pm IST

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Thiruvananthapuram: The Italian government on Tuesday signed a one crore compensation deal with families of the two fishermen shot dead by Italian marines. The two families have now withdrawn all petitions against the Italian crew. But crucially, the criminal case against the Italian marines filed by the Kerala government is still very much on.

Pinku was one of the two fishermen shot dead allegedly by Italian marines off the Kerala coast earlier this year. His sisters watch helplessly as the Centre's flip-flop in the Supreme Court has weakened the case against the marines.

Abhinaya, sister of Pinku, says, "Why was our innocent brother killed without any provocation. My brother was shot down by the marines. How can they be pardoned and let off?"

Almost 2 months after the young fisherman Pinku was shot dead by the Italian marines, his family is still struggling to find peace with the loss.

Pinku had left his studies to go to the sea, after their parents died 7 years ago. His sisters have been staying with an aunt in Kollemcode in Kanyakumari district ever since. He was the sole breadwinner for the family.

Freddy was lucky to escape death but he recounts the horror of that ill fated day. Freddy says the marines opened fire on the fishermen, while they were taking a nap in the evening. He has not received any compensation to repair his boat. He too is concerned the marines may go scott free.

Freddy says, "We have given the police all the proof that the incident happened in our waters and the case should be fought in our land. Some vested interests are creating this confusion."

The law may takes its course. But the government and the courts must pay heed to the voices of these victims.

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