Aarey colony murder case: Mumbai forensic experts using ‘high-end instruments’ to detect intoxicant traces

Mumbai: The forensic scientists are using all possible methods to ascertain if EOW officer’s lone son Atharva Shinde was intoxicated during the rave party, as no traces of drugs and alcohol were found in his ‘viscera sample’ during the normal method of Chemical Analysis (CA) test.

A senior FSL official told the Free Press Journal that Atharva’s viscera sample was sent a bit late. “He (Atharva) died on May 8 and his body was recovered on May 9 around 9:30 am. His viscera sample was collected same day in the evening and was sent to our lab on May 10. The traces (of alcohol or drugs) are easily not found if the viscera sample is sent late. In this case too, we did not find any trace of alcohol or drugs during normal CA test of the sample. So before submitting negative report on alcohol or drug, we have to be 100 percent sure from our end. Hence, we are now using high-end instruments to detect the traces of intoxicants,” said the senior FSL officer.

The forensic scientists are using their powerful gold standard of technique called Gas Chromatography and Mass Spectrometry (GCMS) to analyse if Atharva died of lethal cocktail of liquor and drugs which were allegedly served in the rave party at Royal Palms’ bungalow number 212 on May 7 night.

“We are also using High-Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC) instrument to separate, identify and quantify each component found in the (viscera) sample. If the report comes negative, we will use advanced technique called High-Performance Thin-layer Liquid Chromatography (HPTLC) to find the traces of alcohol and drug, if any,” said another FSL officer. At last, the FSL will use its stas-otto method to analyse if pico-gram level of intoxicant is detected.  “All these tests will take at least four to five more days,” the FSL officer said. A separate team of forensic scientists are also analysing Atharva’s clothes to find the traces of alcohol and drug. The FSL team is also checking if ‘foreign biological fluid’ is found on his clothes as his father has alleged that Atharva was sexually assaulted as there were lacerations on his private part.

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