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Three Decades of DNA Evidence: Judicial Perspective and Future Challenges in India

  • G. K. Goswami
  • Siddhartha Goswami
Chapter

Abstract

During last 30 years, DNA has emerged as a potent forensic tool in advancing justice in India as well as throughout the globe. DNA profiling assists in human identification with great precision and is used for various purposes including adjudication of civil and criminal matters. In criminal domain, DNA helps in stitching crime with criminal and in identification of victim. In civil courts, DNA has increasingly been used in resolving paternity disputes by identifying putative father despite not being recognized under Indian legal lexicon. Presumption of legitimacy under Section 112 of Indian Evidence Act, 1872, recognizes socio-legal father provided a child is born within lawful wedlock. Earlier ‘presumptive’ father, a legal fiction, and ‘putative’ father, a genetic reality, were assumed to be the one and the same person, but DNA has exposed the ‘genetic truth’ of childbirth by lifting the veil from ‘twin fatherhood’ and has opened a Pandora’s box in Indian legal panorama by heralding coexistence of both socio-legal and putative father especially under laws of inheritance. This article attempts to explore the legal trends for paternity determination by using DNA profiling through examining various judicial pronouncements of Indian courts.

Keywords

DNA profiling Presumption of legitimacy Paternity Admissibility Forensic evidence Genetic truth Twin fatherhood 

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • G. K. Goswami
    • 1
    • 2
  • Siddhartha Goswami
    • 3
  1. 1.Gujarat Forensic Sciences UniversityGandhinagarIndia
  2. 2.Academy of Central Bureau of InvestigationGaziabadIndia
  3. 3.Jindal Global Law SchoolSonipatIndia

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