Diatoms are an essential part of forensic investigation in drowning
cases. They are used to differentiate between ante-mortem and
post-mortem drowning and to ascertain the site of drowning. However,
to do so it is imperative to perform the diatomological mapping
of water sources in different regions. The issue of localizing
a drowning site may be resolved with the help of diatomological
monitoring and mapping of the water sources, which generates substantial
references for meeting the ‘criterion of concordance’. The
present study has generated a database of diatom diversity in relation
to different seasons and altitudes.
Water sampling was made from low, mid and high altitudes
during summer and autumn seasons. Important information was
found after a microscopic examination of diatoms in water samples
from different water bodies at different geographical altitudes.
Twenty-seven diatom genera have been observed in the water
samples from the selected localities. The findings of the current
study have exposed the significant effect of seasonal changes and
varied altitudes on occurrence of diatoms. A variety of commonly
occurring site restricted diatoms were identified in the water samples.
This useful information can be significant while investigating
drowning cases from this particular region when the drowning site
is either questioned or unknown.