Special Legislation for Microbial Forensics–A Need of an Hour
Bio terrorism has known to be in existence since centuries. The recent incidence of terrorist attack by using anthrax in the fall of 2001 in U.S. is a good example of Bio terrorism. Though the number of such incidences are few there has arisen a necessity to criminally prosecute the perpetrator. To strengthen defence against bio crimes, there is a need to develop a comprehensive technological network. Microbial forensics is one such new discipline combining microbiology and forensic science. It has been closely associated with the process of attribution or identifying the perpetrator of a biological attack for purposes of criminal prosecution and is used in many countries for the same. Coming to India, though there is no documented case of biological warfare in India microbial forensics has a vast potential in India. As a country which is commonly threatened by terror attacks which was recently witnessed at Pulwama, there is no doubt that biological weapons will be made use of by various terrorist outfits in the near future. However, the present level of application of microbial forensic science in crime investigation in India is quite low, with only 2-3% of the registered crime. There are several reasons for such low percentage thus keeping the standard of police investigation in India poor. Thus, this review article aims to shed some light on this upcoming discipline looking back into the subtle events of the past, assessing the shocking incidents of our present times, legal framework in India, finding out the loopholes in the present framework and proposing prospects in form of a separate legislation to systematically deal with this emerging menace in the future and secure the nations with a special reference to India from the disastrous consequences of bio weapons.