Investing In Forensics.

At the inauguration of the state-of-the-art Centre of Forensic Sciences Training Lab at Punjab Forensic Science Agency (PFSA) in Lahore, the chief minister of Punjab, Usman Buzdar announced that the government would provide Rs1 billion for the purchase of modern equipment for the PFSA in honour of the new lab.

It is true that the PFSA is certainly an integral part of Punjab's law enforcement. During the last three and a half years, the PFSA has made use of new and updated technology to conduct investigations of several high-profile cases. Crime scene investigation has reached new heights in the rest of the world, with Europe and the US making use of complex technologies and forensics to uncover previously unsolvable cases.

Pakistan has yet not reached that level, a fact that is reflected in our low conviction rates. The courts are hesitant to trust forensic evidence and it has only been in recent years that forensic reports have been viewed as important evidence for rape cases.

The standard of techniques employed during investigation in Pakistan has in practice been rudimentary in nature, with an over-reliance on traditional methods passed down from seniors and a mistrust of technology. It is also true that the...

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