Centre to introduce DNA, face matching systems at police stations across country

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Source: The post is based on the article “Centre to introduce DNA, face matching systems at police stations across country” published in “The Hindu” on 25th October 2023

What is the News?

The Government of India is all set to implement the “DNA and face-matching” systems at 1,300 police stations across the country.

Which act allows the government to implement DNA and face matching systems at police stations?

The Government of India is implementing DNA and face-matching systems at police stations across the country as per Criminal Procedure Identification Act,2022.

The act allows the police and the Central investigating agencies to collect, store and analyze physical and biological samples including retina and iris scans of arrested persons.

This Act replaced the Identification of Prisoners Act,1920 whose scope was limited to capturing finger impressions, footprints and photographs of convicted prisoners and a specific category of arrested and non-convicted persons under the orders of a Magistrate.

The National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) has been given responsibility to implement this act.

How is the government implementing DNA and face matching systems at police stations?

The Union Home Ministry has established a Domain Committee with representatives from state police, central law enforcement agencies, and other stakeholders to ensure the successful implementation of the Act.

Some police stations have started recording measurements such as thumbprints, finger impressions, and photographs of accused individuals using existing methods.

The National Automated Fingerprint Identification System (NAFIS) is also being integrated with the Criminal Procedure Identification Act. 

Note: NAFIS has created a central database of fingerprints of criminals which can be accessed by users from all States, Union Territories and Central Agencies. 

What are the challenges in implementing DNA and face matching systems at police stations?

Lack of Training of Police Officials

Lack of funds and resources in police departments

Tools and systems used by the police should be technologically, legally and forensically sound.

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