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October 2020 - 4:34 am IST
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Post mortems in medico-legal cases dip after Maharashtra hospital study

Post mortems in medico-legal cases dip after Maharashtra hospital study

Published:12 September 2020

A committee modified the inquest format and included the provisions of CrPC section 174 in it, which authorises a police officer to not forward the body for post mortem if there is no doubt in cause of death. It is a myth that post mortem is mandatory in all medico-legal cases.

Nagpur | A study by the forensic department of Mahatma Gandhi Institute of Medical Sciences in Sewagram has resulted in a reduction by half of the number of post mortems conducted in medico-legal cases in Maharashtra's Wardha district.
The facility's forensic medicine professor Dr Indrajit Khandekar on Saturday said the reduction in post mortem procedures in burning death cases by 42.68 per cent was recently documented in the 'Journal of Indian Forensic Medicine'.
The study, titled 'Curtailing of Unnecessary Post Mortems', was carried out by Khandekar and MGIMS colleagues Dr Kavita Chaphalkar and Dr BH Tirpude.
"I had submitted a report in 2015 on a large number of post mortems being conducted needlessly even when the cause of death is very clear, leading to loss of man-hours and causing inconvenience to the deceased's kin. The then Wardha Superintendent of Police Ankit Goyal appointed a committee under me to study this issue," Khandekar said.
"We modified the inquest format and included the provisions of CrPC section 174 in it, which authorises a police officer to not forward the body for post mortem if there is no doubt in cause of death. We implemented this inquest format in Sewagram Hospital in 2016. It is a myth that post mortem is mandatory in all medico-legal cases," he added.
When contacted, Wardha Superintendent of Police Basavaraj Teli said, "When the cause of death is clear and nobody has raised doubts on it, then there is no point in conducting post mortem. The new protocol implemented after the study curtailed post mortem procedures by almost 49 per cent."


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