The National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) has planned to develop a comprehensive online database of fingerprints of criminals and convicts from every state by 2017, a project that will help improve investigation and prosecution all over the country.
NCRB inspector general Raja Srivastava and deputy inspector general ID Shukla explained that the data will help conduct investigation into inter-state crimes more effectively and accurately, and at a greater speed.
Fingerprints gathered from crime scenes have been an integral and effective part of investigation for the past 100 years across the world. In India, it’s a challenging task for investigators to fish out fingerprints of criminals which often get lost or lay hidden in piles of files in police stations because no attempt has been made to put them in one database.
Officials of the NCRB, the central agency responsible for collecting and analyzing crime data, discussed a blueprint for developing a database at the recent annual national conference of directors of fingerprint bureaus in Bhopal.
The data will be connected to the Criminal and Criminal Tracking Network & Systems (CCTNS), a nationwide integrated online system conceived after the 2008 Mumbai terrorist attacks to track crimes and offenders.
An intricate mechanism will be at work to ensure fingerprints of all criminals in the country are just a mouse click away for investigators and prosecutors. Simply put, states will exchange data, modern labs will sort and analyze them, these will then be fed into the automatic fingerprint identification system (AFIS) and CCTNS, and the information can be later accessed on computer screens.
A working group of states, comprising Telangana, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Punjab, Tamil Nadu and Himachal Pradesh, was formed to carry out the technicalities.
Another group will oversee strategic planning and administrative matters, including deployment of staff. Both groups will submit a report by February 29.
Fingerprint experts will be sent abroad to study latest techniques in coordination with the Union government.