We all love crime thrillers.Don’t we? The largest number of books that sell are the ones that have a detective going around a murder plot ,trying to put in place the clues. Whether it be Nancy Drew for a kid or Sidney Sheldon as an adult. Not to forget Detective Sherlock Holmes ,the eccentric detective who inspired the entire genre of detective fiction .Had that not been the case ACP Pradyuman and Daya would not have created a record with CID being on air since the past decade. What about that criminal case spamming your facebook wall?
Not only books but TV too. As a child I was hooked on to the Discovery’s earliest show called Medical Detectives aka Forensic Files.It sent TRPs racing. Not to mention Tehkikaat ,Reporter and Byomkesh Bakshi did the same for DD. Most recently all the American and British channels run thrillers at prime time. Be it Breaking bad,Mentalist,Sherlock Holmes ,Castle ,CSI ,Dexter,Body of Proof and all such whodunits. Why leave the movies behind? Silence of the Lambs ,Usual Suspects, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, L.A Confidential and the Hitchcocks classics. A well written crime fiction screenplay (spiced with bold scenes) is the shortest recipe for success.
What I find immensely fascinating is the way these American/English stories handle crimes. The entire area will be cordoned and there will pop a smart and attractive male/female detective (who will be paradoxically dressed to kill) out of a black SUV. Ahh! And the best part is when the forensics team lands up at the crime scene. They will be ready with all the biological,chemical,psychological,morphological mumbo jumbo. The lead expert will examine the slides and advise the detective ;at times engaging in altercations. And just when you thought you had the killer zeroed in,wait for the last blow. There will be a digression in the trail and the least suspected character will emerge as the killer. I often reflect on this. Is this really true? Does the law and order work with this precision and exactness so as to nab the fugitive , silent killer?
As I did my research it turns out that yes,to a great extent it is true in countries like US and UK which indeed have very strong infrastructure as far as the Crime detection and investigation are concerned. The government has its own forensics labs in most of the cities and add to that there are a lot of private labs too catering to forensics.The value of human life lost at the cost of injustice is of utmost importance to the state. Compare that to India. We have a handful of forensic labs in our country and very few courses in forensics science. The credibility of the ones existing too is a big issue. Does human life really mean anything to the state? There are millions of people missing and murdered but those that don’t make headlines are shoved off. What I see here is a major opportunity. If the government utilises the population and boosts crime investigations by increasing the number of personnels in the police force , CBI and CID and equipping the country with forensic labs not only will more employment be generated but also crime rates curtailed.More number of students will enrol in pure sciences .The respect for human life will be restored.A principle that embodies a developed country.Of course this solution seems to be a utopian dream but it can very much be implemented. We are just not putting enough of thought in this direction. Imagine a course at IIT on Forensics engineering . It would encompass psychology,biology,chemistry ,self defence and so much more. It would definitely be a crowd puller as so many of us have grown up adoring detectives.
Why has this never occurred to the politicians sitting in the legislature?
Probably because they are afraid they will be hunted down by a strong investigation system.
That is the end of this whodunit.
Elementary! My dear watch son!