‘Dismiss KEM prof for manipulating findings | mumbai | Hindustan Times
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‘Dismiss KEM prof for manipulating findings

mumbai Updated: Jun 02, 2012 01:11 IST
Menaka Rao

Kunjbihari Agarwal, whose son was allegedly kidnapped and murdered in 2003, filed a complaint with the civic authority, on April 2, seeking the dismissal of Dr Harish Pathak, professor of Forensic Medicine, KEM Hospital.

The complaint alleges that Dr Pathak, who prepared the forensic report to identify the skeleton found by the police, manipulated the findings to state that the skeleton was of the missing boy, Raj Agarwal.

On November 18, 2003, Raj, 14, a Wadala resident went to school but didn’t return home. The crime branch claimed that Raj was kidnapped and taken to Daund near Pune where he was killed. Raj’s parents, Kunjbihari and Aarti, have claimed that the skeleton is not of their son.

Pathak, who is scheduled to take charge as the head of forensic medicine department at KEM Hospital in June, had given two opinions in the case. In an analysis of two DNA reports that did not match Raj’s parents’ DNA, Dr Pathak stated that the body was “biologically related to Kunjbihari”. Besides that Dr Pathak also conducted a digital superimposition photographic examination where he deduced that the skull of the skeleton was “most probably” of Raj.

In 2009, the trial court convicted the seven accused. An appeal is pending before the Bombay high court, which released the accused on bail on grounds that the scientific evidence did not support the prosecution’s case.

Last year, late Dr Ravi Rananavare, former dean of Nair Hospital, conducted an internal inquiry, which concluded that Dr Pathak was not qualified to give opinions of subjects related to forensic science. The inquiry report recommended a punishment of stalling Dr Pathak’s increment for a year. “The entire investigation in my son’s case went haywire because of his reports,” said Kunjbihari.

Dr Pathak said: “I am going to appeal against the enquiry commission, which has not followed principles of natural justice.”

Dr Sanjay Oak, dean, KEM Hospital, said “Becoming head of department is not a promotion as he was already a professor.”