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Bullet injury to fisherman: police take custody of Navy’s guns

September 15, 2022 10:11 pm | Updated 10:11 pm IST - KOCHI

More than a week after a stray bullet hit a fisherman onboard a fishing vessel off Fort Kochi, the coastal police team investigating the case on Thursday took custody of the guns used by the Indian Navy for firing practice at its gunnery school INS Dronacharya.

The move followed allegations by the fishing community that the bullet might have strayed off the firing butt of INS Dronacharya and scaled over the wall while naval personnel were holding firing practice. Ballistic reports said the recovered bullet belonged to the INSAS-type rifle.

The police had inspected the firing butt along with a ballistic expert and taken a vessel to the exact location where the incident had taken place. The police team seized five INSAS rifles from the gunnery school and submitted them in court. “We had already issued a notice to the Navy for surrendering the guns used for practice on the said day. The guns will be sent for forensic inspections and related tests at a lab in Thiruvananthapuram. The investigations will progress based on the test reports,” said a police officer associated with the probe.

Meanwhile, in a statement issued on Thursday, the Navy said it had suitably replied to all notifications received so far from the police seeking information on the incident. “The Navy has been and will continue to cooperate with the police in full measure to arrive at what caused the unfortunate incident,” said the statement.

The bullet hit 70-year-old Sebastian near his right ear while he was with a 25-member fishing group aboard a vessel.

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