Medico-legal a term, which incorporates the basics of the two professions i.e. Law and Medicine.

Law and medicine both are interconnected with each other from the earliest times as former punishes the accused with the help of later in cases like murder, rape, check of paternity etc.

Both law and medicine are interconnected with each other from the earliest time, as Law Punishes the accused with the help of medicine in cases like murder, rape, check of paternity etc.

Subjects deal with medico-legal:-

  1. Firstly. Forensic Science
  2. Further, Medical Jurisprudence
  3. Moreover, Toxicology

Medical Jurisprudence:

Medical jurisprudence is a branch of the law that deals with the application of law to the medicine.  It helps in determining the cause of death, the severity of injuries in the criminal justice system.

Medico-Legal work in Ancient India –

Kautilya in his book ” Arthshastra” , already recognized the correlation of Medicine and Law . He has stated about four different causes that lead to death of a person.

a. firstly, strangulation,
b. secondly, hanging,
c. moreover,asphyxiation,
d. lastly, drowning.

kautliya also stated that a person can die by phyical injury ( By beating or by throwing from the height) or by Poisoning .

In the Arthshastra , a list of forensic evidence for establishing death  has also been mentioned by Kautilya.

Kautilya gives great importance to the Autopsy establishing the cause of death by smearing the body.

Medico-legal work in British India:-

The medical practitioner reported incidence of Custodial death and its certification in Madras in 1678.

In Madras in 1678, Incidence of custodial death and its certification by medical practitioner was reported. Later on, a medico-legal autopsy was performed; And the medical practitioners provided a first wound certificate.

Autopsy –

Autopsy is a medico-legal post-mortem.  One gets this performed for knowing the cause of the death of the deceased person.


India gave the most outstanding contributions to legal medicine. It is the scientific study of the fingerprints.

Later on, the criminal justice system came into existence like the Indian Penal Code,1860, and the Criminal procedure Code in 1861.

Examples of Medico– Legal Cases :-

  1. Cases of injuries and burns.
  2. Abortion
  3. Sexual assault
  4. Rape
  5. Poisoning or intoxication
  6. Unexplained ICU death.
  7. Grievous hurt.
  8. Death on the operation table

Or any of the cases which requires an MLC Certificate.

MLC Certificate:–   A medical practitioner issues a MLC or Medico- legal certificate , after examining of the cases. and later on handed over to the police officers. Moreover, it is basically a record which states about the cause of death of the person.