Department of Higher and Technical Education, Govt. of Maharashtra has taken a visionary step in this context to start aided and fully dedicated Forensic Science Institutes in Maharashtra. In addition to our Institute which was established on 17th August 2009, two such Govt. Institutes have started in Mumbai and Nagpur and they are managed and funded by Dept. of Higher and Technical Education, Govt. of Maharashtra.
Our institute is dedicated totally to Forensic science studies and is first of its kind in the country. Presently, we are offering under-graduate (Forensic Science) program of three years duration. This course includes disciplines such as, Forensic science, Forensic Physics, Forensic chemistry, Forensic Biology, Forensic Psychology, Digital and cyber forensics and Law. We admit 50 students for this course (For the year 2014-15 the Institute has received around 1,200 applications) and the fees per year is merely Rs.2000/-. We also offer post-graduate two years course and admit 20 students on the basis of merit of B.Sc. Forensic Science. In M. Sc. First year is general Forensic Science with specialization at second year. Specialization that we offer to our students include, Fingerprint and questioned documents, Forensic chemistry and toxicology, Forensic biology, serology and DNA fingerprinting, and Digital and cyber forensic with project work.
In addition to the above two courses, the Institute also offers one year PG diploma course in Forensic Science and related law, and Digital and cyber Forensic Science and related law. All the above courses are affiliated to Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar Marathwada University, Aurangabad.
Institute has employed 23 qualified staff members having expertise in different domains of Forensic Science to impart quality education and training to the admitted students.
Since the inception i.e. 2009, the Institute has received funding from department of Higher and Technical Education Govt. of Maharashtra for the multifaceted development of this unique Institute. The Institute has the state-of-art infrastructure with six laboratories and four air conditioned laboratories for sophisticated and advanced instruments. The basic laboratories are of Biology, Digital and Cyber, Physics, Chemistry, Forensic Science and Psychology. All these laboratories have modular furniture and all basic instruments and equipment’s sufficing all the requirements of the curriculum, consultancy and research.
The activities and available sophisticated instruments of our departments are as follows:
- Forensic Science Department: The department has a specialized laboratory equipped with Video Spectral Comparator hyperspectral-6000, Electrostatic Detection Apparatus, Digital Stereo microscope, Fingerprint capturing Unit, Ballistics Comparison microscope, cyanoacrylate fuming chamber, a set of nine crime lite sources, linear crime lite sources, fingerprint development kit, soil and water testing kit, breath analyzer, crime scene management kit and impression casting kit,
- The departmental training includes development and lifting of finger prints on various surfaces, analysis of questioned documents (including stamp papers, cheques, currency, credit and debit cards, and counterfeit coins), and analysis of ink, coins, paper, examination and identification of skeletal remains, comparison of various bullets, cartridge cases as well as fiber samples. The department is also involved in real time crime scene management and reconstruction.
- Forensic Biology Department: The laboratory is equipped with sophisticated equipments like Biological comparison microscope, microtome, Thermal cycler, electrophoretic units, Gel documentation system, Bio-safety cabinet, Water purification system, high speed refrigerated centrifuge, BOD incubator, orbital incubator shaker, Deep fridge and microscopes. The training to the students includes examination of various biological fluids, serological testing, entomological, microbiological, limnological, and enzymatic studies. Isolation, amplification and identification of DNA samples from various sources. Also includes, pathogenic bacteria, fungi, plant and their toxins. Wild life Forensic science includes examination of hair, nails, feathers, skin etc.
- Digital and Cyber Forensic Department: The department has Software and hardware such as Encase, USB Blocker, Winlift, mobile edit, Web blocker, oxygen forensic, paraben live investigation kit, net force, paraben device seizure, solo image, replicater, mobile check, python, drive image, drive lock Stegosuite, CDR analyzer etc. The activities of the department include retrieval of data from various storage devices, mobile phone, and analysis of Call Data Records, analysis of activities on social networking sites, email tracing and Computer systems. Phishing techniques, SQL injections, hacking techniques.
- Forensic Chemistry Department: Equipped with Gas chromatography, double beam UV-Visible spectrophotometer, High performance liquid chromatography, FTIR spectrophotometer, Visual melting point apparatus, Density meter, GC-MS, Vacuum evaporator, thermal gravimetric analyzer, Flame photometer etc. The applications include examination of pesticides, toxins, explosives and their derivatives, narcotics, metals etc. The training includes experiments to confirm adulteration of different food, edible oils, fossil fuels etc.
- Forensic Physics Department: Along with different basic instruments the department is equipped with Raman spectrophotometer, Radioactive measurement, densitometer, noise measurement apparatus. The department is involved in imparting training in the field of ballistics, physics, photography, noise level monitoring and trace evidence analysis (glass, paint, wire, cable, electric meter, electronic circuit).
- Forensic Psychology Department: The department is well equipped with various Psychological testing apparatus which includes Lie detector (polygraph), depth perception apparatus, and around 50 different psychological tests. The department conducts various tests for analysis of IQ, logical reasoning, memory, mathematical ability, thematical apperception test, behavior etc.
- Law Department: Two faculty members of this department impart education regarding IPC, CRPC, Indian evidence act, IT act 2000, NDPS act, drug and cosmetic act, and various legal aspects related to forensic science. The Institute has a separate computerized library with over 2500 books, periodicals, journals, encyclopedia etc. The Institute has internet facility accessible to staff and students free of cost and allow the students to handle basic and advanced instruments with freedom.
The Institute provides opportunities for the students and staff to make them versatile and resourceful in this field by organizing curricular and extra-curricular activities. The Institute had organized a National Conference in Forensic science in Mumbai in 2012. Our staff members and students actively participate in various Forensic Science related conference, seminars and workshops. The Institute has organized lectures and training programs for the local police officers. On the request of Police commissioner, Institute is actively involved in designing protocols for different crime investigations and also few training modules. The Institute also arranges lectures of eminent personalities, training programs for staff and student fraternity. The Institute also sends students for winter and summer training programs to various Forensic science and other laboratories. Organizing the events like On-site crime scene demonstration and investigation, Hands on training on sophisticated instruments, demonstration of fire and arson cases, cybercrime investigation etc. are the regular activities of our students.
Most important is that the students and staff members are helping the regional police department in the investigation of crimes related to mobile, documents, fingerprinting, CCTV, audio-video tapes, rape and sexual assault cases, road accident cases, lie detection as well as crime scene investigations. The vision and mission of this Institute is to produce human resource competent enough to serve in different State and Central Law enforcement agencies.