Guwahati, May 20: Gauhati High Court today asked the director of Forensic Science Laboratory, Assam, to submit to it a report within 15 days on the problems that delay furnishing of reports required in investigating criminal cases.
The court order was issued during a meeting convened to monitor delays in submitting chargesheets.
The laboratory’s director , R.N. Khound, was summoned to the meeting by the registrar general, M.K. Bhattacharjee.
The delay in submission of reports came to light during the hearing of a bail petition filed by Mahesh Kalita of Guwahati in connection with a case registered against him under the Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940.
The case was registered at Gorchuk police station in April, 2013, after the police seized 24,500 bottles of cough syrup containing banned substances from a warehouse taken on rent by Kalita. However, the investigating officer has not been able to produce the forensic report yet.
“The investigating officer informed the court that he has visited the office of the laboratory several times but the report has not been furnished on the ground that there is a breakdown of a machine. In some cases, the post-mortem report is also not furnished to the police in time,” the court’s summon to the director said.
The meeting, which was presided over by the registrar general, was also attended by additional director-general of police, CID, M.K. Sahay, senior superintendent of police, CID, D. Upaddhay, the FSL director and two public prosecutors, J. Kamar and K. Munir.
Police sources said the laboratory could not provide the reports on time as it was running short of manpower and equipment. “The laboratory should be provided with sufficient funds to procure the latest equipment to help the police and other investigative agencies,” a source said.