Monday, Oct 20, 2014

CBI, AIIMS officials to discuss repeat autopsies

Graves of the two cousins who were allegedly raped and hanged from a tree. Source: Ravi Kanojia Graves of the two cousins who were allegedly raped and hanged from a tree. (Source: Express photo by Ravi Kanojia)
Written by Pritha Chatterjee , Geeta Gupta | New Delhi/badaun | Posted: July 17, 2014 12:52 am | Updated: July 17, 2014 8:53 am

The medical board comprising specialists from the AIIMS forensic medicine department will meet CBI officials investigating the Badaun rape-murder case on Thursday to discuss the “possibility and domain” of repeating post mortem of the victims. AIIMS wrote to the CBI last week, giving July 17 as the proposed date to discuss the issue in response to a request from the probe agency.

Police officials in Badaun confirmed the CBI had communicated that the three-member medical panel would meet the agency for the first time Thursday, after which a decision on exhuming the bodies would be taken. “We received a formal letter from the CBI on Wednesday evening. The agency has informed us a medical board will discuss the case and problems with the first autopsy on July 17. They have said a decision on exhuming the bodies will be taken after that,” said L R Kumar, SSP of Badaun.

According to sources, the AIIMS forensic department, Wednesday received a letter from the CBI requesting that the medical board constituted by the institute meet and discuss the problems with the first post mortem.

“We have been asked to conduct a formal meeting to give the reasons for a repeat post mortem, which will possibly be used by the agency to get necessary permissions for exhumation at the earliest,” a source said. The agency has requested the medical board to explain the possible extent of decomposition of the bodies, and whether repeating the post mortem would help the probe.

Sources confirmed the agency, in consultation with forensic experts from Lucknow and Bareilly, had identified irregularities in the first autopsies, which was communicated to AIIMS forensic experts. “We understand the skulls were not opened during the post mortem to study brain tissues. Without this, identifying asphyxia as the cause of death is difficult. There is a classic spotting in the brain from lack of oxygen… this was not even attempted in the post mortem and the doctors relied on post mortem staining of the bodies…We have also been told the genital wounds are not clearly identified to be of rape in both the victims, and a vague finding has been given stating the findings are suggestive of rape,” a source said.

Sources also said the post mortem had been conducted in the evening after sunset, which is usually avoided since forensic evidence is best studied in natural light.

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