Monday, February 18, 2019

‘Register complaints of virginity test as sexual harassment case’, instructs Maharashtra government

Dr K K Aggarwal and Advocate Ira Gupta

On Wednesday i.e. 06.02.2019, in a crackdown on the reported cases of a ‘virginity test’ being performed on newly-wed women of the Kanjarbhat community, the Maharashtra State Government has said it would soon take steps to ensure that such complaints are treated as cases of sexual harassment. The Minister of State for Home said that the state government would issue a notification directing police stations to register a case of sexual harassment in case a woman comes with a complaint of having been forced to take the ‘virginity test’.

A district-wise review of the action taken against caste panchayats, in cases of social boycott, will be conducted by the protection of civil rights (PCR) committees of the police. “Virginity test is a kind of sexual harassment of newly-married woman. If the victim in a virginity test incident is ready to file a complaint, it will be considered a case of sexual harassment and action will be taken accordingly by the investigation agency. Complaints in this regard can be filed with the concerned deputy commissioners of police (DCPs) or crime against women cells. The legal service authority will provide essential help to the victims”. The minister has agreed to issue a notification in this regard.

Some young members of the Kanjarbhat Community have been campaigning through a WhatsApp group against the practice, in which a newly-married woman is allegedly asked to provide proof of her virginity on the wedding night.

Dr KK Aggarwal
Padma Shri Awardee
President Elect Confederation of Medical Associations in Asia and Oceania   (CMAAO)
Group Editor-in-Chief IJCP Publications
President Heart Care Foundation of India
Past National President IMA

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