Delhi's Forensic Lab To Have Psychological Autopsy Facility: Officials

Forensic Science Laboratory in Delhi's Rohini will be the second lab in the country to provide facility for narco-analysis, according to a senior official.

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Delhi's Forensic Lab To Have Psychological Autopsy Facility: Officials

The need for starting the facility for providing psychological autopsy was felt after the Burari deaths.


New Delhi: 

The Forensic Science Laboratory or FSL in New Delhi will soon be starting a facility for conducting psychological autopsy and narco-analysis, said a senior official on Saturday.

The official claimed that the FSL in Delhi's Rohini area, will be the second lab in the country to provide facility for narco-analysis, which is currently only provided by the Directorate of Forensic Science in Gandhinagar, Gujarat.

The need for starting the facility for providing psychological autopsy was felt after the Burari deaths, where 11 members of a family were found dead under mysterious circumstances on July 1.

A psychological autopsy attempts to study a deceased person's mental state by analysing medical records, interviewing friends and family and conducting research into their state of mind prior to death.

The experts from Forensic Science Laboratory had assisted the police in the Burari deaths case in which 10 members of the Chundawat family were found hanging from an iron mesh in the ceiling of the house, while the 77-year-old matriarch of the family, was lying on the floor in another room.

"Our experts were involved in assisting the police in investigation and we had provided them some leads in the case from the registers recovered from the spot that had psychological musings about appeasing God," said the official.

The FSL has two permanent psychologists, who are currently getting training at the Institute of Human Behaviour and Allied Sciences (IHBAS) for carrying out psychological autopsy and are also gaining expertise for carrying out narco-analysis, he added.

Apart from psychological autopsy, the FSL is also taking steps to augment its examination facility, identifying gaps in recruitment, training needs, procurement of instruments and updating of existing facilities.

"Now we are in the process of starting facilities for psychological autopsy along with other facilities for examination of post blast residues, snake venom, electronic devices, facial recognition/reconstruction, Brain Electrical Oscillation Signature Profiling (BEOS)," he added.

The FSL has a detailed proposal in the final stages for establishment of a separate Crime Scene Management Division to provide scientific assistance to the investigating agencies through the entire day, the official said.

It has also conceptualised a proposal for establishing a specialised DNA unit for capacity building and reporting of DNA cases with a target of reporting 1000 cases per annum specially pertaining to crimes against women and children.

Last month, the Delhi Police had written to the CBI for conducting a psychological autopsy of the 11 members of the Burari family, the report of which is still awaited.

The Delhi Police had also employed the use of psychological autopsy in the Sunanda Pushkar death case and the police had relied heavily on its report while filing the charges in the case.



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