New Delhi: The Supreme Court has agreed to hear the plea of Italian marine Salvatore Girone on May 26. Mr Girone is one of the two Italian marines who are accused of killing two Indian fishermen off the coast of Kerala. He is seeking permission to go to Italy till an International Arbitral Tribunal decides the jurisdictional issue between India and Italy.
The other marine Massimiliano Latorre is already in Italy on health grounds and his stay there has recently been extended by the Supreme Court till September 30 this year.
A vacation bench comprising Justices PC Pant and DY Chandrachud would hear the fresh plea of Mr Girone on Thursday in which he has sought modification of a Kerala High Court order granting him bail in the case.
The marine, who presently is in the custody of the Supreme Court and residing in Italian embassy in New Delhi, has said that he be allowed to go back to his native place till the arbitral panel decides the jurisdictional aspect in the matter.
Italy and India have been making contrary claims over the right to prosecute the two Italian marines in the case.
Centre had earlier informed the court that international arbitration proceedings in the matter would be completed by December 2018.
The court had earlier stayed all criminal proceedings, including the trial of the two marines.
While allowing the joint request of India and Italy, the Supreme court had said the proceedings would remain stalled till the jurisdictional issue about which country has the right to conduct trial was decided through international arbitration.
The marines, who were on board ship 'Enrica Lexie', are accused of killing two Indian fishermen off the Kerala coast on February 15, 2012.
The complaint against the Italian marines was lodged by Freddy, the owner of the fishing boat 'St Antony', in which the two Indian fishermen were killed when the marines opened fire on them allegedly under the misconception that they were pirates.