The Supreme Court today ruled that the Kerala government has no independent jurisdiction to try two Italian marines for shooting two Indian fishermen off the Kerala coast last year.
The apex court bench of Chief Justice Altamas Kabir and Justice J Chelameswar held that it was only the union of India that had the jurisdiction to hold the trial of the two marines Massimilano Latorre and Salvatore Girone.
However, the court said the central government, in consultation with the chief justice, will set up a special court to hold the trial.
The Italian government will be free to raise the question that it had the jurisdiction to conduct the trial of these two Italian marines in their country.
Upon raising this issue of jurisdiction, the special court will decide whether the government of India or the Italian government has the jurisdiction to conduct the trial of the two marines under the Maritime Law.
Two Italian marines, Chief Master Sergeant Massimilano Latorre and Sergeant Salvatore Girone, on board the Italian cargo vessel Enrica Lexie had shot dead two Indian fishermen Feb 15 last year suspecting them to be pirates.