In another interesting case, a claim was made in respect of original hand written manuscript of the book written by Swami Dayanand Saraswati (1824-1883), a social reformer and most prominent Guru of Arya Samaj, who wrote his famous book “Satyartha Prakash”.
The manuscript of the book was forwarded to the Central Forensic Science Laboratory of CBI to check its authenticity. On careful examination it was revealed that the manuscript was written using a Ball- Point Pen. As per the history it was known that Ball- Point pens were not in existence during the period of time when Swami Dayanand Saraswati wrote his book. Ball-Point pens came into existence during the time of World War- II, i.e., around 1945.
Therefore, it was established that the manuscript claimed to be in the original handwriting of Swami Dayanand was patently false and forged.
In case suit no. S23/07 Dinesh Kumar Vs. Suraj Bhan Shri Pitamber Dutt Additional District Judge Tis Hazari courts, Delhi, in his final judgement has not only accepted but appreciated the Evidence of Dr. S.C Mittal and observed:
‘No incriminating material has been come out during his cross examination and the said witness has successfully passed the ACID TEST of cross examination’.
36) The defendant has also examined Dr. SC Mittal, handwriting as DW-4 who has examined the signature over the counter foil of the rent receipts Ex. PW1/3 to Ex. PW1/67 and compared the same with the Admitted Signatures of the defendant and submitted his report Ex. DW4/A. The said expert has opined that the Questioned Signatures marked Q1 to Q34, Q34 to Q36 to Q65 are forged signatures and they are not written by the same persons who wrote the Admitted Signatures marked A1 to A22 attributed to Suraj Bhan. The said witness has been extensively cross examined by the counsel for the plaintiff but he has reiterated his opinion expressed by him vide his report Ex. PW4/A.
In another case a contract for the sale of old junk of aero planes was executed between Indian Airlines and a private vendor. An auditor suspected the substitution of the last page of the tender which was showing much lower rate than expected for the sale of aluminium, plastics and rubber parts of the discarded planes. During the examination of the said page of the contract, experts observed that there is mention of a land line telephone number below the name and signature of the vendor.
On checking with the telephone department it was established that the telephone exchange which had issued the telephone line mentioned in the contract was commissioned much later to the vendor than the date of signing the sale agreement.
Thus, it was established that the last page of the sale agreement was substituted and hence forged and backdated documents.
There was yet another case investigated by the experts of the Institute. The case pertained to a number of money receipts and rent receipts which were claimed to be of a particular period and used by a person for some specific purpose.
The Institute was assigned the task to check the authenticity of the money receipts and rent receipts. For arriving at a definite conclusion, opinion of India Security Press (ISP) – Nasik was sought on the Revenue Stamps affixed on the receipts.
On their reply it was established that some of the Revenue Stamps were actually printed and issued much later than the date of execution of the receipts. Therefore, it was conclusively established that the receipts under question were non- genuine and hence fabricated.
Documents feature prominently in all manner of business and personal affairs. Almost any type of document may become disputed in an investigation or litigation. For example, a questioned document may be a sheet of paper bearing handwriting or mechanically-produced text such as a ransom note, a forged cheque or a business contract. Or it may be some material not normally thought of as a ‘document’. FDEs define the word “document” in a very broad sense as being any material bearing marks, signs or symbols intended to convey a message or meaning to someone.
Examinations and comparisons conducted by document examiners can be quite diverse and may involve any of the following:
- Handwriting (cursive / printing) and Signatures
- Typewriters, Photocopiers, Laser printers, Ink Jet Printers, Fax machines
- Chequewriters, Rubber stamps, Price markers, Label makers
- Printing Processes
- Ink, Pencil, Paper
- Alterations, additions, erasures, obliterations
- Indentation detection and/or decipherment
- Sequence Determination
- Physical Matching
A trainee must learn how to present evidence before the court in clear, forceful testimony. Fledgling examiners in the later stages of training can get a glimpse into the legal process as well as a better sense of this aspect of their work through participation in a mock trial or by attending actual court hearings to observe the testimony of qualified examiners. These are guidelines and not requirements.
Justice Newey, High Court of London Chancery Division in Case No. 5436 of 2002 between Kalvinder Singh Sandhu (Applicant) and Dr. Sukhvender Kaur (Respondent) has accepted evidence of Dr. S C Mittal and in his Judgment he writes:
“Dr Subhash Mittal, a forensic document examiner called on behalf of Dr Kaur, expressed the view that the fluorescence of documents at issue tends to confirm that they are of the dates attributed to them. Mr Gupta disputed the value of fluorescence evidence in the present context, but I do not think I can dismiss Dr Mittal’s views as clearly without foundation; and”
“With a degree of hesitation, I have ultimately concluded that Mr Sandhu’s complaints in respect of the witness statement of 1 December 2009 have not been made out to the relevant standard. Mr Sandhu is alleging very serious misconduct: the dishonest concoction of a large number of documents. In the end, I do not think the evidence is strong enough to prove such misconduct beyond reasonable doubt. In other words, I cannot feel sure that Mr Sandhu’s complaints are well-founded.”
Evidence of Dr. S C Mittal accepted and appreciated by the Justice.
This institute has been approved by Foreign Regional Registration Office (FRRO) for registration of international students for study of Forensic Science.
The Govt. of FIJI has recognised and approved this institute as a study center for its police officers.
Mr. S Jitoko, Fiji Police officer, has been nominated for 2- years advance diploma course in Forensic Science. He has completed his first semester.