Dr J.M. Vyas, Vice-Chancellor of National Forensic Sciences University (NFSU), was conferred with the Padma Shri, the fourth-highest civilian award, on the eve of the 73rd Republic Day of India in recognition of his contribution in forensic sciences,
Dr Vyas, one of the leading forensic experts in the country, has been the founder Vice-Chancellor of the NFSU since 1st October 2020. He is also heading the Directorate of Forensic Science of Gujarat, Gandhinagar, for the past 28 years, including the additional charge of its Director-General since 9th November 2020.
The ICRC, as a reference organization in humanitarian forensic action, constantly explores opportunities for meaningful national, regional or even transcontinental partnerships. The NFSU, established as the Gujarat Forensic Sciences University in 2009, offers academic programs, research and consultancy in specialized areas of forensic sciences and has been elevated to the status of Central University and an Institution of National Importance in 2020.
It was an essential milestone in humanitarian forensics in India when the ICRC and NFSU joined efforts and established the International Centre for Humanitarian Forensics (ICHF) on the NFSU Gandhinagar Campus in Gujarat in 2018 with the vison to become a Centre of Excellence and a mission to address a range of critical policy issues on emerging humanitarian challenges and to promote humanitarian forensic action globally.
ICHF aims to set the standards in humanitarian forensic action focusing on advocacy and leadership, consultancy, research and innovation, and knowledge exchange. In a region prone to natural and human-induced disasters, with limited and unevenly distributed resources for disaster response, ICHF leads the way to develop regional and global initiatives by creating a strong synergy and streamlining existing resources.
The Centre accepted its first students for the Post-Graduate Diploma in Humanitarian Forensics Program in January 2021. The programme is open to Indian and international students and is designed to meet the demand in competent workforce for sustainable, resilient and effective disaster response mechanisms and efficient emergency preparedness.
Since the onset of COVID-19, numerous guidelines, protocols, and policies have been published to manage the dead safely. ICHF has conducted several workshops and events highlighting opportunities and identifying solutions to transform emergency preparedness regarding the protection and dignified management of the dead and related forensic issues.
In 2021, both the ICRC and NFSU renewed their commitment to the advancement and promotion of the ICHF as an internationally recognized institution.