In an insensitive move, the Forensics Department of Khyber Medical College University proposed a plan to charge rape victims Pakistani Rs 25,000 for medical examination and Rs 5,000 for an autopsy for the local residents of Peshawar, reported The Express Tribune.
The decision was taken at a meeting of the Management Committee held on February 14 in which 17 new charges were approved.
“When you go to a police station they often ask you to pay for the diesel for police vehicles. Now they will ask the general public to pay the charges of autopsy and even medical examination of rape victims. So the decision is not a welcome one,” said a rights activist Tamur Kamal.
The proposed plan also suggested charges for keeping corpses in the cold storage to Rs 1,500 per 24 hours. For DNA testing Rs 18,000 has been fixed.
The local police send the unclaimed dead bodies to the Khyber Medical College University, where they are stored for months until their identification and retrieval by the family.
The activists believe that the new rules will affect the rape victims. In Pakistan, the Police Department already has a limited investigation budget, and the introduction of such high charges may lead to police forcing the victims’ families to pay for not only autopsy but also DNA tests and medical examination of rape victims.