LAHORE - A new mortuary has started functioning in the City with jurisdiction over 17 police stations. The new mortuary has been established under the administrative control of of Allama Iqbal Medical College/Jinnah Hospital. Since its establishment, a few days back, post mortem of 17 dead bodies have been performed here. The establishment of a new mortuary in the City, meant to share burden with the old mortuary was an old demand of medico-legal circles as well as people suffering for delays in the postmortem. The Punjab Health Department has issued notification in this regard according to which the Department of Forensic Medicine, Allama Iqbal Medical College has been authorised to conduct Medico Legal Autopsy/Postmortem examination of dead bodies being brought from 17 police stations (PSs) of the City. While the Department of Forensic Science, KEMU will also continue to attend similar cases from rest of the City police stations, the notification said. Earlier, there was only one department of forensic medicine and toxicology, situated at KEMU providing various services including postgraduate and undergraduate teaching services, research facilities, medico legal examinations etc. Basically, another mortuary in the City has been establishment in order to ease the burden on the old mortuary. The old mortuary under administrative control of KEMU was serving all the 76 police stations of the City alone for the years. There was extraordinary burden on the old mortuary due to which people, law enforcement agencies besides medics of the department concerned were facing a lot of troubles. Moreover, being situated at a congested area, heavily encroached by the local traders, it became almost inaccessible for the people and law enforcing agencies, let alone getting its services easily. The new department of forensic medicine is being established at the cost of Rs 60 million in the premises of the Allama Iqbal Medical College where under one roof the people will get different services earlier not available in the City. These services include postmortem, histopathology lab (for the detection of diseases), DNA tests, radiology department (with all diagnostic facilities including X-Ray machines, CT Scan) besides the facilities to preserve putrefied bodies as well as a separate hall for the policemen. Initially, the mortuary has been made functional with minimum staff that included head of the department, an assistant professor, two associate professors, two demonstrators and other junior staff. The department is being constructed in front of the Colleges administration block. A separate entry was being given to the visitors including officials of law enforcement agencies, facilitating them to have direct access to the department. When contacted, Principal Allama Iqbal Medical College/Jinnah Hospital Prof Dr Javed Akram said it was a rather difficult task for him to establish new forensic science department in the City. He said this was evident from the fact that no other teaching hospitals was interested in this project for different reasons including legal complications, sensitivity of the job and extra load on the institute. He said he, however, took it as a challenge and ultimately made this department functional and that too within only a few weeks. Besides he informed at present this department is lacking a lady doctor to perform postmortems of female dead bodies. He said that it is a rather difficult task for the department to convince lady doctors for this sensitive job, as they (lady doctor) are reluctant to interact with the police and going through legal proceedings in local courts. To a question, he said the department has carried out successfully postmortem of 17 dead bodies brought from different police stations of the City so far. The new mortuary will deal with following police stations: City Raiwind, Manga Mandi, Chuhng, Sattokatla, Hanjarwal, Liaqat Abad, Model Town, Wahdat Colony, Garden Town, Johar Town, Faisal Town, Township, Green Town, Kotlakhpat, Nishtar Colony, Muslim Town, and Kahna.