In a court hearing on Monday, the Lahore High Court passed a verdict that the two-finger and hymen test of victims of rape are illegal and unconstitutional. The judgment was given by Justice Ayesha A. Malik on the basis that such tests have no logical scientific or medical reasoning and therefore do not serve as solid evidence.
It further stated that because it holds no forensic value therefore it cannot be used in cases of sexual abuse and physical violence. It also mentioned that the medical officers appointed with the responsibility to fill the forms have insufficient knowledge and lack training.
Since the tests violate the right to life and right to privacy they are henceforth banned and shall not be conducted to prove a woman’s virtue. In response to the argument, it was also explained that such a practice is offensive, humiliating, and discriminating on the behalf of rape-survivors and henceforth declared as unlawful and actionable, and answerable to the law.
The 30 pager adjudication described that Pakistan has signed several pacts with and international treaties that completely condemn virginity testing and honoring those promises it must adhere to and abide by those commitments.
The court emphasized that it cannot rule in favor of or judge and pass comments on character and question one’s honesty and truthfulness just because a report says so especially over sensitive issues where there is no strong scientific explanation and medical theory wavers and is unclear on the matter under discussion.
They are unreliable and put the assault victim in a position where one feels helpless and forced to undergo an already existing mental pressure causing personal and social trauma. So all such examinations will no longer be carried out by any medical practitioners or physicians.
Orders were given to the provincial government to ensure that the tests are legally and officially prohibited and were asked to design policies and protocols that deal with the victim in the most respectful and courteous way possible.