FIR in Italian shooting case very strong: Chandy

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Chief Minister Oommen Chandy Friday denied media reports that the first information report (FIR) lodged by Kerala Police against Italian officials who shot dead two Indian fishermen last week was weak.

"It is unfortunate that canards are spread like this by people who do not have a clue of what the case is about. Our case is very strong and nothing was left to chance when the case was registered. There is no need for an alternative FIR," Chandy told reporters here.

The vessel, which was berthed in the outer sea at Kochi, was brought to the dock at the Cochin Port Trust Friday morning and ballistic experts of Kerala Police are expected to go on board.

Two Italian Marines, Latorre Massimillano and Salvatore Girone, the security officials on board the vessel Enrica Lexie, have been arrested for shooting dead two Indian fishermen Feb 15 after mistaking them to be pirates.

Their police custody was extended for another seven days by a court in Kollam on Thursday.

The investigating team has now got a search warrant to go on board the vessel to make a detailed investigation by taking into possession the weapon used by the Italians.

The court at Kollam also granted permission to representatives as named by the Italian officials to accompany the investigation team when it searches the ship and also interrogates the Italians.

Meanwhile, later in the day a high level meeting of diplomatic officials from Italy and India is taking place in Delhi to discuss the case. It would be attended by representatives of the Kerala government also.

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