Role of Forensic in the Indian Criminal Justice System

19/07/2023 knowyourlaw By jiten


In this video Avani Shukla of LawWiser explains the role of forensic science in the Indian criminal justice system.


Forensic science plays a crucial role in the criminal justice system by providing scientific evidence that can help establish guilt or innocence in a court of law.


India has a rich history of forensic science, dating back to ancient times, a detailed reference of which can be found in Kaultilya’s Arthashastra. Some Chinese records proved the use of fingerprints in ancient South India. Today, forensic science has evolved into a highly specialized field that plays a critical role in solving crimes. This includes analysis of blood stains, fingerprints, DNA, footprints or analysis of identification of voice, handwriting etc.


The use of forensic evidence in criminal cases in India is governed by the Indian Evidence Act, 1872, which lays down the rules for the admissibility of evidence in court. It can be used to establish guilt or innocence, as well as to identify suspects and link them to specific criminal activities. It can also be used to reconstruct crime scenes and provide critical information that can help investigators solve crimes.


Several types of forensic evidence are collected to find the real culprit behind any crime. For example:

1. Bloodstain: It can tell us about the amount of force used and what kind of weapons were used. It helps in knowing how exactly the incident might have happened.

2.  Lip Prints: Lip prints, also known as cheiloscopy, are a relatively new but increasingly important form of forensic evidence. It can be used in a variety of criminal cases, including cases involving sexual assault, robbery, and homicide. For example, lip prints found on a glass or a cigarette butt at a crime scene can be compared to known lip prints from suspects or witnesses to determine if they were present at the scene of the crime.

3. DNA Analysis: DNA analysis is a technique used to identify individuals by analyzing their DNA. It is one of the most powerful forensic tools available and is often used to link suspects to a crime. In India, DNA analysis is commonly used in cases involving rape and murder.

4.  Fingerprint Analysis: Fingerprint analysis is the process of examining fingerprints left at a crime scene to determine the identity of the individual who left them. It is a highly specialized field, and forensic scientists in India use a variety of techniques to analyse fingerprints, including the use of powders, chemicals, and lasers.

The Supreme Court of India highlights the importance of forensic evidence in the Indian criminal justice system.

In the case of State of U.P. v. Naresh and Others (2011), the Apex Court upheld the admissibility of DNA evidence in criminal cases, stating that it was a scientifically reliable means of establishing guilt or innocence.

In another case, State of Maharashtra v. Praful B. Desai (2003), the Supreme Court highlighted the importance of fingerprint evidence in criminal cases, stating that it was a valuable tool for identifying suspects and linking them to specific criminal activities. The court also emphasized the need for proper fingerprint analysis techniques to ensure that the evidence was reliable.

Overall, the use of forensic evidence in criminal cases is a vital tool for ensuring that justice is served and innocent people are not wrongly convicted. These techniques help investigators build a case against suspects and provide evidence that can be presented in court.

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