Regulation for Forensic Guidelines in Post-Mortem Examinations in India

The need for a detailed, organized procedure for performing autopsy is important, especially in India since cremation of the deceased bodies is a popular ritual amongst many populations in the country. This means that much of the evidence can be obliterated and the possibility of exhumation for re-testing is annulled. Sadly, the procedure for autopsy remains different and unclear among experts from different States and there aren’t many checks and balances with that respect. The study investigates whether the absence of unanimous standards about post mortem examination may adversely affect the evidences, hence affecting the trial outcome.


Eshani Singh

Research Findings

Qualitative studies and field interviews revealed the non-uniformity of medical examination procedures conducted across various facilities in North-India and suggested few underlying factors that possibly led to this situation. In this regard, we discuss the repercussions of having improper or insufficient medical evidence and suggest reforms, regulations and incentives that can help improve the performance in accordance with court standards. With the help of comparative analysis of foreign statutes, we suggest measures to review the existing guidelines, and enforce new proficiency tests that address the existing lacunas and create a uniform guideline applicable to all forensic expertise involving post-mortem examinations.

Outcomes of the Project

The paper for submitted by Eshani Singh to JGLS Exam office as part of a 4-credit Independent Research Project. There are plans to expand the study in the near future when there is scope to recruit some field researchers into the project.