The home ministry has decided to establish a national fingerprint database of nearly 28 lakh convicts and those arrested for criminal offences, by collating records from all the states.
The move is expected to aid in the speedy identification of criminals and investigation of crimes accross the country.
At present, the Delhi-based Central Finger Print Bureau (CPFB) has data of over 9.7 lakh finger print records of convicted or arrested persons in digitized form. But over 18 lakh finger print records with finger print bureaus of states and Union Territories are not linked to this central database.
The home ministry has now decided to migrate the records from the state bureaus and make them part of the national database. The National Informatics Centre is creating a ‘cloud’ for this integration.
The integration of all data at CPFB would mean queries raised by police from any part of the country based on finger prints could be fur- nished on real time basis. As of now, investigating agen- cies send finger prints lifted from a scene of crime for matching to their respective state finger print bureau, which runs them past its own record. It there is no match, the prints are then sent to the CPFB and finger print bureaus of other states. Besides being time consuming, the efficacy of this system is dependent on the cooperation extended by other bureaus.
Gujarat has the biggest database of fingerprints with nearly 12 lakh records, while Andhra Pradesh has 5.3 lakh records and Madhya Pradesh 3 lakh records.
Absconding criminals are often linked and traced to crimes from the finger prints lifted from crime scenes while the data- base is also crucial in identifying bodies, which helps in building leads and establishing motives behind the crime. Portable live scan fingerprint devices and satellite communications means queries can be raised from the field too.
The ministry is also considering a proposal to integrate the finger print data with other biometric techniques like digital images, palm prints and auxiliary biometric like Iris records in future.