Title: Unraveling the Role of DNA Testing in Rape Cases: Legal Perspectives and Challenges


Welcome to the official blog of the Law Offices of Kr. Vivek Tanwar Advocate and Associates, where we are dedicated to providing litigation support services for matters related to DNA Testing. In today’s blog post, we aim to shed light on the prevailing issues surrounding DNA Testing, the legal framework in place for their protection, and the steps we can take as a society to combat these acts. Join us as we explore this critical subject and empower you with the knowledge to protect your rights and safety.

In the pursuit of justice, transparency in evidence processing plays a pivotal role, as emphasized by Locard’s Exchange Principle. The correlation between justice being done and being seen to be done is crucial, especially in cases of under-reported rape incidents in India. The lack of witnesses in such isolated crimes makes DNA testing an indispensable tool to establish transparency and accuracy in investigations.

DNA Testing: A Pillar of Transparency

DNA, or Deoxyribonucleic Acid, found in body organs like hair, skin, and blood, serves as a unique identifier for individuals. The inherent distinctiveness of DNA, except in cases of identical twins, makes it an invaluable tool in forensic investigations. The collection of DNA evidence, obtained from saliva, urine, blood, skin tissues, semen, and sweat, has proven to be more credible and reliable than other forms of evidence.

Legal Framework and Privacy Concerns

The incorporation of DNA testing in rape cases has raised legal and ethical considerations. With the recognition of the “Right to Privacy” as a fundamental right post the “K.S. Puttaswamy v. Union of India” judgment, obtaining consent before collecting DNA samples is imperative. Section 53A of the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC) allows DNA sample collection on the advice of a police officer, but obtaining consent remains crucial, especially during medico-legal examinations.

Emergence of DNA Testing in Rape Cases

The evolution of DNA testing in the criminal justice system can be traced back to the recommendations of the Malimath Committee. The committee emphasized the use of forensic sciences in rape investigations and proposed the inclusion of DNA experts under Section 293(4) of the CrPC. The subsequent amendment in 2005 facilitated the collection of DNA samples, addressing the need for uniform statutes and guidelines.

Admissibility Challenges and Legal Perspectives

The admissibility of DNA evidence faces challenges due to the absence of specific regulations. Courts exercise discretionary powers, considering the method of collection and testing. The Indian Constitution’s provisions, including the “Right to Privacy” and “Right against Self-Incrimination,” necessitate scrutiny. While some legal concerns persist, the judiciary has acknowledged the value of DNA technology in proper identification.

International Perspectives

Different countries have varying approaches to the admissibility of DNA tests in rape cases. The USA generally accepts DNA evidence, while England leads in the efficient use of DNA technology. Canada emphasizes expert testimony criteria, and Australia remains cautious, often refusing to admit DNA test results.

I. Admissibility of DNA Tests in Rape Cases

Controversial Nature of DNA Evidence Admissibility: This section explores the contentious issue of admitting DNA evidence in rape cases, highlighting the discretionary powers vested in the court. The absence of specific regulations or guidelines regarding DNA admissibility is addressed, focusing on the court’s role in determining the accuracy and propriety of the evidence.

Constitutional Considerations: Examining the compatibility with the Indian Constitution, this part delves into how DNA technology intersects with constitutional provisions such as the “Right to Privacy” and the “Right against Self-Incrimination.” It discusses relevant Supreme Court decisions, emphasizing the court’s cautious stance towards DNA technology and the need for comprehensive regulations.

Article 20(3) Analysis: This subsection scrutinizes the constitutional implications of DNA testing under Article 20(3), which protects individuals from self-incrimination. Drawing from legal precedents, it clarifies why DNA evidence doesn’t fall within the definition of a witness, thus avoiding conflict with constitutional rights.

II. Code of Criminal Procedure and DNA Testing

Evolution of CrPC: Focusing on the Code of Criminal Procedure, this part traces the historical development of Section 53 and introduces the amendments, particularly Section 53A. It examines the authority granted to investigating officers for collecting DNA samples in rape cases and addresses lingering doubts about the admissibility of DNA test findings.

Judicial Perspectives on DNA Testing: Highlighting judicial opinions, this subsection navigates through conflicting judgments on the admissibility of DNA tests. It sheds light on the evolution of legal perspectives, acknowledging the conclusiveness and accuracy of DNA tests while emphasizing concerns related to statutory, constitutional, and public policy grounds.

Role of DNA Testing in Prosecution: Drawing insights from specific cases like “Krishna Kumar Malik v. State of Haryana,” this segment discusses the pivotal role of DNA testing post the 2005 amendments to CrPC. It reflects on how DNA testing has become a crucial tool for the prosecution in establishing a foolproof case against the accused.

III. Indian Evidence Act and DNA Testing

Lacunae in the Evidence Act: This section scrutinizes the Indian Evidence Act’s silence on DNA testing and modern technologies. It addresses the absence of guidelines on admissibility and evidential value of DNA in rape cases, contrasting this with the Act’s mention of child legitimacy and parentage issues.

S. 112 and DNA Testing: Exploring the conflict between Section 112 of the Evidence Act and DNA testing, this part analyzes the Supreme Court’s stance in “Nandlal Wasudeo Badwaik v. Lata Nandlal Badwaik & Anr.” It discusses the court’s prioritization of scientific evidence over presumptions, ensuring justice by considering the best available science.

Evidential Value of DNA Tests

DNA tests are recognized as expert opinions, providing critical forensic evidence. The biological importance of DNA, including its role in semen, blood, and saliva analysis, aids in establishing the occurrence of the crime. However, DNA evidence is not conclusive proof on its own and requires corroboration with other evidence for a fair and just verdict.

Landmark Cases Utilizing DNA Evidence

Genesis of DNA Forensics: This section explores the inaugural use of DNA fingerprinting in criminal cases, highlighting the pivotal instance in 1986 involving Colin Pitchfork’s conviction for rape and murder in the United Kingdom.

Judicial Recognition of DNA Importance: Examining key Indian cases such as “Thograni v. State of Orissa” and “Geeta Saha Vs. NCT of Delhi,” this subsection emphasizes the evolving role of DNA testing in criminal investigations. Noteworthy is the High Court’s directive for a DNA test on the fetus of a rape victim, reflecting the increasing reliance on DNA evidence to establish guilt or innocence.

DNA in High-Profile Rape Cases: This segment delves into specific rape cases where DNA testing played a crucial role. The landmark judgment of “Kamalanantha v. State of Tamil Nadu” involving a swami accused of rape and the Maulana Azad College incident in 2002 illustrates instances where DNA analysis was instrumental in securing convictions.

II. Legal Provisions and Evolution of DNA Profiling

Historical Void in Legal Framework: Addressing the absence of provisions related to science, forensics, and DNA in the Criminal Code of Procedure and Indian Evidence Act, this part underscores the challenges faced by investigative authorities. It outlines the limitations before the 2005 amendment and the hurdles in collecting scientific evidence.

Amendment of CrPC, 2005: This subsection delineates the transformative impact of the 2005 amendment to the Code of Criminal Procedure, introducing DNA profiling and empowering medical practitioners to collect DNA samples. However, it stresses that the mere allowance of DNA evidence collection doesn’t resolve concerns about its admissibility in legal proceedings.

DNA in Civil and Criminal Parentage Cases:

Highlighting the dual role of DNA testing in civil and criminal contexts, this part elucidates its significance in determining parentage. It scrutinizes Section 112 of the Indian Evidence Act, which addresses the presumption of a child’s legitimacy and the conclusive proof of parentage. The amendment’s impact on challenging presumptions and introducing medical scrutiny is explored, underscoring the transformation from presumption-based judgments to evidence-based determinations.


DNA testing has revolutionized rape investigations, offering a unique and powerful tool for identifying perpetrators. While legal frameworks are evolving, challenges persist in ensuring uniformity, addressing privacy concerns, and establishing clear guidelines for admissibility. DNA’s importance in corroborating evidence is undeniable, yet it should be viewed as part of a comprehensive investigative approach rather than sole conclusive proof. As legal systems adapt to technological advancements, the role of DNA testing in rape cases remains integral, demanding a delicate balance between justice and privacy.

We are a law firm in the name and style of Law Offices of Kr. Vivek Tanwar Advocate and Associates at Gurugram and Rewari. We are providing litigation support services for matters related to the Indian Evidence Act 1872.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This field is required.

This field is required.


The following disclaimer governs the use of this website (“Website”) and the services provided by the Law offices of Kr. Vivek Tanwar Advocate & Associates in accordance with the laws of India. By accessing or using this Website, you acknowledge and agree to the terms and conditions stated in this disclaimer.

The information provided on this Website is for general informational purposes only and should not be considered as legal advice or relied upon as such. The content of this Website is not intended to create, and receipt of it does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship between you and the Law Firm. Any reliance on the information provided on this Website is done at your own risk.

The Law Firm makes no representations or warranties of any kind, express or implied, regarding the accuracy, completeness, reliability, or suitability of the information contained on this Website.

The Law Firm disclaims all liability for any errors or omissions in the content of this Website or for any actions taken in reliance on the information provided herein. The information contained in this website, should not be construed as an act of solicitation of work or advertisement in any manner.