The Minister of Women and Child Development, Maneka Gandhi, recently said that rape evidence kits would be in place at police stations by the end of July 2018. She also talked about a centralised list of offenders that will be prepared to keep the general public informed.
The Minister was at an event laying the foundation stone of Sakhi Suraksha Advanced DNA Forensic Laboratory at the Central Forensic Science Laboratory (CFSL) when she talked about the plan.
The kit will include a list of items to be obtained for getting evidence in sexual assault and rape cases.
Forensic labs to be set up
The minister said that two more forensic labs will come up in Mumbai and Chennai soon. Currently, there are three labs at Pune, Bhopal and Guwahati. She expressed her concern that CFSL receives about 20,000 cases of sexual assault cases annually for forensic analysis. The figure is greater than the agency’s capacity of handling about 16,700 cases. Additionally, these labs have a backlog of around 13,000 cases
The labs under CFSL have only been able to analyse 3,000 cases annually. Thus, the new labs will supplement the work and would probably increase the number of cases analysed. The minister also said the forensic DNA lab at CFSL Chandigarh will become functional in another three months.
Plans regarding other issues
At the event, Maneka Gandhi also talked about other issues that are currently under the policy umbrella of the government. Regarding human trafficking, a bill is being planned to control and remove the horrendous crime from the country. It may be presented in July this year.
Gandhi also talked about fresh rules to protect brides from getting cheated by NRI grooms. The HT reported, “Apart from mandating registration of marriage within 48 hours of the ceremony, any offence might invite either cancellation of passport or attaching the family’s property if the offender does not appear before authorities. Also, summons would be posted at the ministry of external affairs’ website and will be deemed as ‘served’.”