DNA evidence: Current perspective and future challenges in India

Sunil K. Verma, Gajendra K. Goswami

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

8 Scopus citations

Abstract

Since the discovery of DNA fingerprinting technology in 1985 it has been used extensively as evidence in the court of law world-wide to establish the individual identity both in civil and criminal matters. In India, the first case of parentage dispute solved by the use of DNA fingerprinting technology was in 1989. Since then till date, the DNA technology has been used not only to resolve the cases of paternity and maternity disputes, but also for the establishment of individual identity in various criminal cases and for wildlife forensic identification. Since last half a decade, India is exercising to enact legislation on the use of DNA in the judicial realm and the draft 'Human DNA Bill-2012' is pending in the parliament. Largely, the promoters of forensic DNA testing have anticipated that DNA tests are nearly infallible and DNA technology could be the greatest single advance step in search for truth, conviction of the perpetrator, and acquittal of the innocent. The current article provides a comprehensive review on the status of DNA testing in India and elucidates the consequences of the admissibility of DNA as 'evidence' in the judicial dominion. In this backdrop of civil and criminal laws and changing ethical and societal attitudes, it is concluded that the DNA legislation in India and world-wide needs to be designed with utmost care.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)183-189
Number of pages7
JournalForensic Science International
Volume241
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 2014

Keywords

  • DNA Bill (India) 2012
  • DNA evidence
  • DNA fingerprinting
  • DNA legislation
  • DNA profiles
  • Forensic DNA testing in India

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine

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