National Commission for Women (NCW) on Thursday took suo motu cognisance of a media report wherein it was reported that a female Air Force officer was subjected to 'two-finger test' by Indian Air Force doctors after she complained of alleged sexual assualt by a colleague.
"The National Commission for Women is utterly disappointed and strongly condemn the action of Indian Air Force doctors conducting the banned two-finger test on the victim, thereby violating Supreme Court's decision and also violating the right to privacy and dignity of the victim", the NCW press release said.
Simply put, the two finger test is an intrusive physical examination that is intended to gauge the laxity of a woman's vaginal muscles and whether the hymen is present or distended. Not only are such tests considered to be a blatant violation of a woman's dignity, it is also unscientific and inconclusive in ascertaining rape.
According to the victim, Indian Air Force doctors had administered the two-fingered test - an illegal, unscientific examination to determine sexual abuse - and she was also questioned about her "sexual history".
The Supreme Court had previously held that the results of such tests cannot be used against rape survivors and that it was irrelevant whether the victim was seemingly "habituated to sexual intercourse". More recently, the Lahore High Court had held that the test was unconstitutional, and offends the personal dignity of the victim.
According to the complaint, the woman had come to Air Force College for training and the assault took place inside her room at the Air Force Administrative College in Coimbatore's Redfields. She got injured while playing a sport. After taking administering medication, she went to sleep in her room, and when she woke up she found that she had been sexually assaulted, said the complaint.
The accused, a flight lieutenant, was arrested by the Coimbatore All-Women police on September 25 after he surrendered before the district judge court.