Expected to start biological, serological sample testing in a month

The Union Territory will soon have its own Forensic Science Laboratory to facilitate quick and efficient testing of samples for police investigation.

The lab is expected to start biological and serological sample testing in a month. Other services will be developed and put in place when funds are released by the Centre, sources said.

At present, if there are cases that require forensic testing, the department would send samples to Hyderabad for testing at Central Forensic Science Laboratory. Unfortunately, since the lab has a large backlog of cases from across Andhra Pradesh as well as other areas, there is usually a delay before the results are obtained.

It is not uncommon for the results of a single sample to take around three or four months to be processed, which often leads to unnecessary delay in processing of cases. Another issue is transportation to the laboratory. Samples have to be packed properly and taken by hand to the lab . This also causes some delay, a senior police official told The Hindu.

As a result , the Puducherry government sent a proposal to the Centre about five years ago asking for a forensic laboratory. Finally, funds were released in 2013 under the Police Modernisation Programme by the Central government. The forensic lab would now be housed in a police building near Kirumambakkam Police Station, the official said.

Work has already started on the lab, with money being utilised to repair the building and also appoint people on a consolidated pay basis. Technicians have also been hired and equipment purchased for biology and serology testing.

Initially, the proposal was for Rs. 9 crore. However, the Centre has released only part of the funding so far.

Once the full fledged lab comes up, it would be used as a regional Forensic Science Laboratory that could serve the neighbouring regions as well, the official said.

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