Court Frowns Upon Autopsy Reports

Lambasts police for shoddy investigation of youth’s death, asks for case records

Published: 22nd August 2014 06:00 AM  |   Last Updated: 22nd August 2014 08:38 AM   |  A+A-

BANGALORE: The case of an alleged suicide that could well be a murder has now turned the spotlight on the veracity of post-mortem reports.

The case refers to the death of a youth in 2011. Hearing a petition filed by the parents who sought a reinvestigation into the   death of their son, Justice A  N Venugopala Gowda of the High Court observed on Thursday: “Post-mortem reports are generated and not always real.’’

The police had closed the case calling it a suicide.

According to the petition filed by Pushkar Rao and his wife Savithri Devi, their son Pralay died on January 10, 2011. Pralay’s body was found hanging at his house in HSR Layout. Based on the post-mortem report, police had concluded that Pralay was an alcoholic and committed suicide.

The parents who refused to believe that their son would end his life then moved the High Court for reinvestigation. Pralay was their only son who resided in India while their other children are settled in Australia. Pralay was educated in England and was living in the city after his wedding.

The couple, who hail from Hyderabad, ran from pillar to post seeking justice for their son. When four years of efforts did not yield results, the couple moved the court, citing several discrepancies and procedural lapses in the investigation. On Thursday, when the case came up for hearing, the judge  came down heavily on the prosecution for poor investigation.

 Suspecting a deep conspiracy, the court initially asked the police to produce the entire record. The police had alleged that Pralay committed suicide by hanging from the fan in his room.

However, the court,  after perusal of the photographs taken before removing the body, opined that “prima facie it is not a case of suicide. A body is brought and made to stand on the cot before hanging it from the fan”.

‘Post-mortem Not Done by Doctors’

“A young man has died and officers have taken things for granted since they are not settled in India. This makes me suspect the action of police,” the judge observed.

He doubted the medical reports and opinion given by the forensic expert. He observed that in such cases, the post-mortem is seldom done by the doctors. “If we actually inspect the places, we would see the ground reality that the post-mortem is done by people other than doctors,” he said.

The court has now called for a record of the case from the District Divisional Magistrate and also asked the police to keep all the records related to the case in safe custody and produce them by next week.


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