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Updated: March 22, 2013 02:13 IST

Marines coming back to face trial in India

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Italian marines Salvatore Girone, left, and Massimiliano Latorre, at a military prosecutor's office in Rome on Wednesday.
Italian marines Salvatore Girone, left, and Massimiliano Latorre, at a military prosecutor's office in Rome on Wednesday.

India assures Italy there will be no death penalty for the duo

The Italian government has said it will return to India two marines facing murder charges in the shooting deaths of two fishermen off the Kerala coast.

The announcement on Thursday reversed an earlier decision by the Foreign Ministry that the duo would not return on Friday (March 22), as agreed, after they were granted permission to return home to vote in the Italian elections.

The case escalated tensions between India and Italy. The Indian Supreme Court announced that the Italian Ambassador could not leave the country.

Special Correspondent reports:

According to Italian news agency ANSA, which quoted Italy’s deputy foreign minister Steffan de Mistura, the breakthrough came after the Indian government assured the Italian authorities there would be no death penalty against the two marines.

The Italian government also obtained a written assurance from the government that the fundamental rights of the two marines would be protected.

News reports say that External Affairs Minister has assured Italy the neither the marines will be arrested nor will be awarded capital punishment. How he can say that they will not be awarded capital punishment as India has not abolished capital punishment even when so many organizations are demanding that it should be abolished by one all countries as it is a barbaric one. The Marines case has not gone on trial. The court for it itself has not been constituted. What punishment should be meted out will be decided when the case is tried and it is for the judge to decide. Then how a minister can give an assurance that they will not be awarded capital punishment? He can say only on the basis of evidence so far available there is no chance of the marines being sentenced to death. Everyone knows it but how a minister can give assurance?

from:  Guptan Veemboor
Posted on: Mar 22, 2013 at 18:34 IST

What exactly do we want by exaggerating this whole issue to its
lengthiest limit,after all it's an international issue,why don't we let
the issue goes,the supreme court have so many countless decision to
make.After all the Italians do pays for their guilt.If we don't
extinguished the match stick at the right time,it can burnt a whole lot.

from:  Haokip
Posted on: Mar 22, 2013 at 14:19 IST

India got many issue to discuss but not drag the whole country on this
shameful incidence.While the country needs friends and allies for it's
shameful Poverty index and GDP output, no matter what,should it remember
'forgive and forgets'.Doing business with India is lengthy and full of
controversy is what THE INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY observes.We shouldn't
lose our face,but remembers to be professional when it's going
international issue.Exaggeration will leads us to isolation.

from:  Jasper
Posted on: Mar 22, 2013 at 13:48 IST

Finally diplomatic pressure from India has worked. Let the law take its
own course though personally I feel India's stand in trying the marines
is wrong from day one due to lack of jurisdiction. Nevertheless from a
diplomatic point of view it certainly abodes well for the country.

from:  sanjay
Posted on: Mar 22, 2013 at 10:57 IST

It is good to note that the Italian Government has developed better senses finally in one way or another and decided to send the marines back to India for trial. However, if what this article says at the top is true it is very sad. How can anyone assure, be it government or otherwise, that there will be no death penalty even before the trial began. Law should take its own course and the final verdict must be given. If the court now decides the verdict based on the assurance given it will be the saddest day for our judicial system.
If such an assurance is given, It is very sad and I have no second thinking in saying that we lost our self respect.

Will the large number of people of India in Italian jails get similar assurances from the government there.

from:  B R S BABU
Posted on: Mar 22, 2013 at 10:54 IST

How can govt assure Italy when the matter is sub-judice? This govt is insulting its own citizens by giving such assurance. Where is the respect for the law of the land?

from:  Premkumar
Posted on: Mar 22, 2013 at 10:53 IST

"India assures Italy there will be no death penalty for the duo"

How can they do that? Doesn't that undermine the judicial process?

from:  Mahesh
Posted on: Mar 22, 2013 at 10:18 IST

This time, please put them in real prison clothes, throw them in real prison, and feed them real prison food.

from:  DJ
Posted on: Mar 22, 2013 at 10:16 IST

why not italy surrender their ""veto power of U.N., U.S.,"" now they are
here to answer why this ship was here in india, whom it meet, what it
delivered, to whom, ,why not it could be Trillion Dollor Answer, ,why
not it could be also Black money of our politicians,

from:  ramalingam venkatraju
Posted on: Mar 22, 2013 at 09:59 IST

Positive development on that since tension was in the air and bilateral
relations between two countries were at stake. Since two marines have
been accused of serious charges and it was of paramount importance to
put on trial in India. After SC interference Italy realized the
international ramifications of their reluctance to send the marines to
India. Since the marines have been charged with the gory shooting on
Indian waters hence a comprehensive investigation is to be carried out
and if found guilty they will be punished as per the law of the land.

from:  neeraj bhatt
Posted on: Mar 22, 2013 at 09:57 IST

I think the Indian govt should promise not to hang Dawood Ibrahim and ask Pakistan to hand him over for trial. Why are western crime suspects getting special treatment? First they were allowed to go home during christmas then to vote. Indian suspects don't even get to family visits in jail.

from:  Sudhanshu Vyas
Posted on: Mar 22, 2013 at 09:51 IST

When the case is still before the Supreme Court, the Govt seems to have passed the judgement already !!

from:  V. VEDAGIRI
Posted on: Mar 22, 2013 at 09:48 IST

This I didn't expect. I guess that Italy has decided that, now that the world is watching, India may feel constrained to conduct a proper trial in the manner of a civilized country, something that certainly did not seem to be going to happen before this most recent crisis. Pretty clever.

from:  Ashu
Posted on: Mar 22, 2013 at 09:21 IST

How can our nation assures that there is no death penalty? Do our IPC doesnt have any death penalties for murder charges? If Indians would have done the same in Italy, would they assure for not having any death penalties?

from:  Ranga
Posted on: Mar 22, 2013 at 08:38 IST

how come Indian government assure no death penality for the italian accused. isnt that the job the judges to do. day by day our govt is going nuts.

from:  Praveen
Posted on: Mar 22, 2013 at 08:34 IST

This case remains me the ealier Purullia Arm drop case(1995).Finally the outcome of this case also may be end up with the same fashion

Posted on: Mar 22, 2013 at 08:20 IST

PM Mr.Manmohan Singh's tough stand has paid off.He did well to call
Italy's bluff.The EU countries that dared to tell India off for not
observing Geneva Conventions about immunity to Ambassadors now have egg on their faces for not verifying the facts before issuing threats.

from:  Raj Kumar
Posted on: Mar 22, 2013 at 08:19 IST

Personally I am against capital punishment. However, how can the government give an assurance that there will be no death penalty againt these two alleged murderers when the matter is sub-judice? This is tantamount to the government interferance in a matter that is before the Supreme Court which is grossly unconstitutional. Is our country being dictated to by Italy? This is disgraceful. I think the Prime Minister needs to be educated in Indian Constitution. India needs a strong prime minister as Manmohan Singh is too weak and is unfit to be the Prime Minister of our country.

from:  Mohanraj
Posted on: Mar 22, 2013 at 07:12 IST

This should 'Silence'all Critics of the UPA. Also this should be a "God Sent" [or Italian Sent ] chanace for ALL the Parties to come together and decide to Change the Law and abolish Death Penalty. Having said that let me also express my personal anguish - this will never ever happen since all parties, including the UPA & NDA have other Agenda - empty rhetorics.

from:  Shankar
Posted on: Mar 22, 2013 at 06:15 IST

The case is in the court. How can the Indian Govt. give an assurance
that the marines will not get death sentence? Will any sensible Govt.
could give such an open assurance? In my view, this part of the news is
false. Some one is bend upon keeping the issue alive against UPA and

from:  Joseph ES
Posted on: Mar 22, 2013 at 05:38 IST

Why has a precondition been imposed on the judicial process by the govt?
This is blatant interference in the judicial process and breach of
judicial sovereignty.
And why do we need to give written assurances that the Marines need to
have their fundamental rights protected? Does the Italian govt not have
any respect for our model of the rule of law?

from:  Aritra Gupta
Posted on: Mar 22, 2013 at 04:26 IST

It's good that Italy has agreeed to return the marines to India. But how can the Govt give an assurance that they will not get death sentance. It is for the courts to decide. Can the Govt interfere in the courts judical process. Highly deplorable.

from:  K S Balasubramanian
Posted on: Mar 22, 2013 at 04:23 IST

The Government is pre-judging the case and promising a sentence when it has no such authority.

from:  mani sandilya
Posted on: Mar 22, 2013 at 04:18 IST

prospects of a fair trial brighten, now that the marines would be back
in india. the issue shouldnt have gotten to the extent of escalating
tensions between the two countries, good that there is a resolve here.

from:  sagar
Posted on: Mar 22, 2013 at 04:05 IST

No death penalty? Who is the Judge?

from:  mohan
Posted on: Mar 22, 2013 at 04:02 IST

1. Italy should be commended for showing maturity in conducting their
diplomatic relations.
2. The accused are entitled to a fair trial, speedily undertaken. The SC
must ensure that the same laws which are applied to all other citizens
is justly applied in this case too.
3. Should the accused be found guilty, it should be open to both
countries to exchange prisoners to serve their sentences in their own
4. There must be proper investigation into how the extraordinary leave-
permissions were granted, to ensure that there was no foul play, and to
learn lessons for the future.
5. The citizens must ensure that the return of the accused does not
affect (a) cancellation of corruption tainted chopper deal (b) exchange
of information to permit a thorough investigation into the chopper scam.
6. The citizens must remain alert to the possibility that this whole
saga was stage managed to garner electoral advantage (see we got the
accused back; no we didn't cut any backroom deals, etc).

from:  D Mahapatra
Posted on: Mar 22, 2013 at 03:19 IST

I appreciate Italy for its efforts to secure the two of its citizens
who are serving the country as marines. The Indian Supreme Court is
also great and if not for its order to curtail and confine the
Italian ambassador's movement within India, the GOI would not have
found possible to get back the marines. Thn assurance form the GOI
that the two marines will not be punished with death sentence is a
matter of a simple understanding that that in our criminal
jurisprudence and apllication of criminal law of punishment only in
rarest of rare cases that death penalty is applied.

from:  P.Padmanaabhan
Posted on: Mar 22, 2013 at 03:18 IST

When the central (I) Government comes to know that it is shaking....this is what happens.
Whatever it is..India is great and this will be a warning to all 'developed' countries and make them think twice before taking India for granted. No Death penalty for these two murders but I hope they spend their entire lives in some Indian jail for murdering two innocent Indian children of 'lesser Gods'.
I offer my respect to the Indian Supreme Judiciary for preventing the Italian ambassodor from leaving the country.

from:  Krishna Menon
Posted on: Mar 22, 2013 at 03:16 IST

A shameful chapter in Italian Conduct , hopefully is over.

from:  s.s.verma
Posted on: Mar 22, 2013 at 02:47 IST

This is great news. Italy and India share a huge interest in excellence of human spirit.
Supreme court protected India's dignity and the Government of India showed that
our interest was in upholding the justice.

from:  RK
Posted on: Mar 22, 2013 at 02:35 IST

Italy, Well Done at last! and putting an end to the controversy. India should amend, ameliorate its system for an expeditious justice delivery which is unknown to it so far. No case however important it may be should not go beyond one year.

from:  Vyas K Susarla
Posted on: Mar 22, 2013 at 02:33 IST
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