Two-finger test on rape survivors is banned — so why is it still performed?

The Madurai Bench of Madras High Court on April 21 directed the Tamil Nadu government to ban the "two-finger test" performed on sexual assault survivors, citing previous judgments which said that the practice was unconstitutional and invasive....

Two-finger test on rape survivors is banned — so why is it still performed?

 

 

 

 

 

 

THE Madurai Bench of Madras High Court on April 21 directed the Tamil Nadu government to ban the "two-finger test" performed on sexual assault survivors, citing previous judgments which said that the practice was unconstitutional and invasive.

The Supreme Court had deemed the practice unconstitutional in 2013, and held that the test should not be performed.

Despite these directions, it is still performed in several parts of the country, including in Tamil Nadu, prompting the HC to reiterate the apex court’s order.

The two-finger test is an unscientific and regressive procedure that involves the insertion of two fingers into a person’s vagina to gauge the laxity of vaginal muscles, thereby determining her ‘virginity’.

It is based on the patriarchal assumption that a woman who is sexually active is less likely to have been sexually assaulted; several judgments and research have shown that a person’s sexual history has no bearing on sexual assault.