News headlines

Times of India

Dubai/Mumbai, Jun 12: An Indian ship captain was on Sunday sentenced to life imprisonment and five of his crew members were handed down a five-year jail term by a UAE court for murdering a sailor, a Navi Mumbai resident, on board a vessel.

The UAE court in Fujairah convicted the captain, Jitendra Malhotra, and the crew members for the murder of Sudhir Jagannath Nonia, who was working as a fitter on Champion Pioneer, a Norwegian oil tanker, in February.

Nonia who hailed from Nerul in Navi Mumbai, was beaten to death by his mates on board the tanker in international waters off the coast of the Emirate of Fujairah in the UAE.

The ship, which was coming from New Mangalore port in Karnataka, was to dock at Fujairah.

The police there got involved in the case as the emirate was the territory nearest to the vessel. The tanker, which was in international waters after delivering chemicals from Mangalore to Fujairah , was en route to Kuwait to pick up another shipment when the incident took place.

Sudhir, who had passed out from the Fr Agnel Technical Institute in Navi Mumbai , was the sole earning member of a family comprising his mother and a younger brother.

Following the court’s verdict , an appeal is to be filed by the crew members because Nonia’s family is said to have pardoned them.

However, the pardon has not been taken cognizance of as it was not certified and attested by the Maharashtra government.

The Sahar police too had registered a case of murder against the ship captain and other crew members.

“We had written to the state government seeking permission to investigate the incident which occurred in foreign territory,’’ said ACP Bipin Bihari. Till now the police has not received sanction to proceed in the case.

The police will now seek legal opinion since the captain and other crew members have already been convicted in the case.


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