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Explained: What is physiological autopsy and why will CBI use it in Sushant Singh case

New Delhi, Aug 25: The Central Bureau of Investigation is likely to conduct a physiological autopsy in the Sushant Singh Rajput case

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This process would involve a detailed study of every aspect of Sushant's life. It would include a close study of his relations, his posts on the social media, his messages on WhatsApp. The conversation with his family and friends would also be studied in detail.

Explained: What is physiological autopsy and why will CBI use it in Sushant Singh case

This is for the third time only that such a method is being adopted. Considering the various angles involved in the case and the complex nature of the investigation, physiological autopsy becomes extremely important.

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The CBI had adopted this method previously in the Burari mass suicide case that took place in Delhi two years back and in the Sunanda Pushkar case. An official explained to OneIndia that this case has multiple sides to it. While at first it was passed off as a suicide, then came allegations of foul play.

Sequence of events:

Even if it is a case of suicide, we need to get into the sequence of events in order to find out whether there was any foul play involved. It is extremely important to understand what led to the death. Hence this process would help us study behavioural patterns as this will help built a proper picture of his mental state before his death, the officer also explained.

Burari mass suicide:

In 2018, a physiological autopsy was adopted in the Burari mass suicide case in which 11 members of a family were found dead at this home in North Delhi's Burari. The physiological autopsy had said that the deaths were not by suicide and was rather an accident during a ritual. The report had said that the none of the family members had an intention to end their life.

While conducting the physiological autopsy, the Central Forensic Science Laboratory team of the CBI analysed the notes, registers that were found in the house. They also recorded the statements of friends and family members of the family.

As part of the process the elder son of the family matriarch Dinesh Singh too had been interviewed along with his sister Sujata Nagpal.

The diaries of the families written by the family for over 11 years in which they spoke about attaining God were also analysed. It was found that one of the family members Lalit Chundawat had visitations form his dead father and he would in turn dictate certain things to his family members. It was he who had driven the family to perform the rituals in which they apparently tied their feet, hands and covered their faces with cloth.

A valuable tool:

A physiological autopsy is a valuable tool for investigators. It is a tool of research on a completed suicide. It involves collecting all available information through a structured interview of the family members, relatives, friends and also those who had been attending to the person. Information of health care records, psychiatric records and other documents relating to the person are collected and the physiological autopsy synthesises information from multiple information and records. Also this process helps in ascertaining a persons psyche, his daily routine and behaviour.

Admissibility in court:

In the Sunanda Pushkar case, the physiological autopsy was relied upon. The police said that through this test, they gathered information on the cognitive functioning, psychological well being, state of physical health and her social behaviour.

However like lie detector tests and narco analysis tests, physiological autopsy is not admission in court. It can be used as a tool by an investigator but not as evidence under the Evidence Act.

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