Orissa High Court fixes Jan 24 date for hearing habeas corpus petition by Gitanjali Meher

The Bench, however, directed Parhi to ensure that the affidavit is filed not later than January 10.

Published: 02nd December 2021 09:15 AM  |   Last Updated: 02nd December 2021 09:15 AM   |  A+A-

Orissa High Court.

Orissa High Court.

By Express News Service

CUTTACK: The Orissa High Court has fixed January 24 as the date for hearing on a habeas corpus petition filed by Gitanjali Meher, a resident of Sambalpur, relating to her son who went missing after a Russia-bound merchant vessel he was deployed in caught fire in 2019.

The whereabouts of Gitanjali’s son Siddharth is not known since the ship ‘Maestro’ in which he was working as an under-training deck cadet, caught fire on January 21, 2019. The mishap occurred due to LPG leakage during a ship-to-ship fuel transfer near Kerch Strait in Russia. 

A division bench of Chief Justice S Muralidhar and Justice AK Mohapatra fixed the next date of hearing on the matter on Tuesday after Assistant Solicitor General of India Prasanna Kumar Parhi stated that he will file a detailed affidavit explaining the protocol followed when an Indian goes missing abroad in an accident.

The Bench, however, directed Parhi to ensure that the affidavit is filed not later than January 10. Advocate Ashis Kumar Mishra argued on behalf of the petitioner. Earlier, Deputy Director General of Shipping (Technical) under the Union Ministry of Shipping had filed a counter affidavit to the petition.

The counter affidavit stated it is not possible to ascertain the exact location where the ship’s crew drowned in the deep and silent water zone. Still, the rescue team deployed was undertaking the search using ultra-mechanical procedure.


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