Human Rights Watch finds Rajasthan Doctors perform banned two finger test on rape survivors
Rajasthan, November 8: After the Nirbhaya gang rape case that happened in 2012, more number of women are reporting attacks but are often humiliated by police and doctors or intimidated to withdraw cases.
A study conducted by Human Rights Watch found the banned two-finger test that involves a doctor inserting fingers into a rape victim’s vagina to determine if she is sexually active. This test is being carried out at a hospital in Rajasthan.
According to media reports, Meenakshi Ganguly the South Asia director at the US-based advocacy group said that in some states, both the police and the medical system have not adopted the measures the government set out.
The highest number of rapes occur in India but many sex crimes are not reported, offenders often go unpunished. According to sources, the government data reveals that about 35,000 rape cases were reported to the police and 7,000 convictions made in 2015, both increasing by about 40 percent in three years.
The Human Rights Watch said that the access to support services starting from legal aid to healthcare is poor and the government guidelines are often flouted.
According to reports, women and girls said that they received no attention for their health needs and also no counselling was given to them. The India’s top court in 2013 said that the two-finger test violated a woman’s right to privacy.
The two-finger test was banned and the Indian Council of Medical Research issued new guidelines in 2014. But the Human Rights Watch found that the test was mentioned in a form that doctors fill in when they examine rape survivors at a Rajasthan hospital.
The Human Rights Watch called for India to introduce a victim and witness protection system to encourage more people to come forward. More than 20 rape survivors, lawyers, doctors and police officials in four states with a high prevalence of rape were interviewed.