New Delhi: Apprehending that the Cyprus ship which collided with an Indian warship in January last year might sail out of Indian jurisdiction, the Centre on Saturday moved the Supreme Court to restrain it from leaving Indian territorial waters.
In an urgent hearing, justices H L Dattu and B S Chauhan assembled today on a weekend in the Supreme Court, but refused to pass any order and pulled up the Centre for approaching it at the last moment.
The bench said that it cannot set a precedent to take up such matters on an `unsitting` day and posted the matter for hearing on Monday.
"We should not set a precedent that on a recovery suit he Supreme Court is passing order on an `unsitting` day," the bench said, adding, "We do not see urgency to take up the case today."
Additional Solicitor General Indira Jaising, appearing for the Centre, pleaded that the case be heard as the arrested ship might sail out of Indian jurisdiction after a Bombay High Court order, which had said that the foreign ship can leave Indian waters after paying a sum equal to the valuation of the vessel, which is around Rs 48 crores.
The government had claimed that the damage to its warship was extensive and had sought compensation of around Rs 1,058 crores.
The bench, however, refused to give an urgent hearing but agreed to hear it on Monday.
The two ships had collided at the Mumbai port on January 31, last year. The Cyprus-flagged MV Nordlake was exiting the harbour as the Indian warship INS Vindhyagiri was trying to navigate its way in. A major blaze had broken out on the Indian naval vessel following the accident.