India: 120 pirates on trial

18 witnesses still to be deposed.

Pirates trial: Foreign witnesses to depose via video-conferencing

The state government has agreed to provide Rs 31 lakh for the purpose.

Almost after a year’s hiatus, the trial against the 120 Somali pirates is likely to resume as the state has agreed to provide Rs 31 lakh to arrange the deposition of 18 foreign witnesses via videoconferencing.

The pirates have been charged with Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, in addition to attempted murder, unlawful assembly, criminal intimidation, criminal conspiracy, hijacking a ship and carrying weapons under IPC. They have also been booked for waging war against the nation and under various sections of the Arms Act.

The trial was at its fag-end after 81 witnesses who were examined due to the non-availability of foreign national witnesses. However, the remaining 18 witnesses from 6 different countries will now be able to depose from the capital of their respective countries via video-conferencing based on the arrangements made by the state.

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