How these forensics on wheels help Delhi cops put cons behind bars

NEW DELHI: The mobile forensics vans introduced to save time while lifting and analysing evidence from crime scenes have till August visited over 25,000 spots since their induction in February. This has proved a boon for police in their investigation. Forensic experts are able to perform on-the-spot forensic tests in the vans before sending them for further analyses to the Forensic Science Laboratory.

The spots visited this year till August related to house theft (10,492), burglary (4,164), rape and child sexual abuse incidents (924), robbery (700), murder (352) and attempt to murder (474). Crimes of other sorts required the vans to make 8,537 visits. “The vans carry an official in charge of the crime team, fingerprint experts and forensics photographers. They collect vital evidence from the crime scene,” an official said.

Besides equipment like a refrigerator, weighing machine, CCTV camera, LED screen, stereo microscope, laptop, digital camera and flashlights, the vans also have 14 types of scientific kits. The main purpose of these kits is to ensure that samples and exhibits are collected without being contaminated. Delayed collection often leads to proof being contaminated.

The officer explained, "Before sending the exhibits to FSL, we conduct on-the-spot tests to determine the integrity of the evidence lifted and the level of contamination.” Earlier, experts at crime spots collected exhibits according to their judgment. Often, reports after analyses at FSL showed the collected samples had been contaminated. “With the use of the scientific kits, the collection of evidence is also more proper and precise,” the officer added.

These kits help forensic experts to analyse fingerprints, body fluids, hairs, fibres, gunshot and explosive residues, bite marks, documents, tyre marks, shoe prints, drugs and other important samples.

"The kits are helpful for analysing different crime situations,” said the official. “For example, if the case is related to drugs, we have a narcotics test kit that allows on-the-spot detection of substances such as marijuana, opium and heroin. In cases related to firearms, we use gunpowder detection and bullet hole testing kits. It helps us perform a presumptive test on a crime scene for suspected shooters. It also detects the presence of components in gunshot residues." Apart from the kits, the mobile forensic vans also have the facility to preserve the samples at different temperatures.

Ravindra Singh Yadav, special commissioner of police (crime), claimed that the 15 forensic vans had enhanced evidence collection capabilities. "Forensic evidence plays an important role in the conviction of criminals. These special vans have the latest equipment that helps us conduct on-site tests," Yadav said. Bihar: FSL, Bomb Squad Team collect samples from bomb blast site in Sasaram

Source: The Times of India