New Delhi: The Delhi government has expressed its inability to ban the Per Vaginal (PV) examination, more commonly known as the two-finger test, medical examination of rape survivors.
The government yesterday issued a guideline on medical examination of rape survivors which was circulated to its hospitals.
The circular reads, “It cannot be recommended that physicians be made to function under the constraint of a complete ban of these essential steps of internal examination of a sexual assault survivor.”
The advisory, issued under the name of special secretary (health), said that the doctors and practitioners in government hospitals are properly sensitised that this test is not at all a routine test.
The government, however, in its guideline has conceded that such tests may not be necessary in all cases.
The Supreme Court last year had also said that such tests are inhuman and should be banned. The NGOs across the country working in the field welcomed the order.
The government clarified that PV examination is not done to judge if the woman under examination is habituated to sexual intercourse but for some other reasons.
“Vaginal examination is done in patients who come bleeding or with some discharge, so vaginal examination cannot be completely stopped. It is to treat the patient and save her life and we have been doing it in specific rape cases,” said a senior gynecologist of a government hospital.
The advisory also asks doctors to counsel the victims and that they must be made aware of the importance of thorough medical examination and collection of forensic evidence.
What is two-finger test?
A PV test involves insertion of finger into the rape survivor's private parts for assessment of internal injuries, use of force if any, noting any discharge and gathering of sample among others.