The post mortem has to be done by a panel appointed by district collector of minimum two doctors and a videographer.
Mumbai: The state home department recently issued a government notification (GR) laying down directions on conducting post-mortem of a person who passed away in police custody or prison. As per the GR, autopsy in such cases can be done at 17 state- run medical colleges with compulsory video-recording of the process, which has to be submitted along with the report of forensic pathology to the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) at the earliest.
Earlier, the autopsy was conducted at only a few hospitals in cases related to death in prison or police custody, which led to delays and at times created a law and order problem owing to protests by the relatives of the deceased persons.
The GR states that the home department issued a new format that has been sent to all the newly formed state-run medical colleges across state. Also, the forensic pathologist are responsible for sending the autopsy report and documented videography or audio and visuals records to the NHRC at the earliest.
As per the GR, forensic pathologist has to work with a panel of minimum two doctors and a government recognized videographer which will be formed by the district collector.
The cost of videography will be initially borne by the dean of the medical college and later; it will be reimbursed from the respective police commissioner, superintendent of police or prison.
State home minister, Dr Ranjit Patil said, “Earlier the body of a deceased had to be taken to far away places for conducting autopsies which created issues, with the new GR, conducting post mortem will be easier. The deceased’s family were burdened with an unnecessary issues, now with the proper panel and documentation, there will be no chance for discrepancies”
According to forensic officials, earlier the dead body had to be taken to a designate PM centers, which weren’t covered under any jurisdictions, and eventually led to superfluous load on staff and doctors performing PM.