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HP high courts holds doctor negligent on account of performing two-finger test on rape victim : Compensation of Rs. 5 lakhs to rape victim

Shimla: The doctors of Palampur Civil Hospital were severely criticised by the Himachal Pradesh High Court for subjecting a minor rape survivor to the two-finger test and directed the state government to pay a compensation of ₹ 5 lakh to the child after recovering the amount from the erring doctors. The court also directed all medical professionals not to conduct such a test and warned doctors conducting such a test would be liable to prosecution.

Holding that the Medico-legal Case (MLC) report in the child rape case was “demeaning”, a division bench of the high court comprising Justices Tarlok Singh Chauhan and Satyen Vaidya also asked the government to hold an inquiry against the doctors who examined the survivor to fix responsibility.

The court observed that the MLC was “self-incriminating, self-inculpatory and hitting the privacy of minor rape survivor” and slammed the doctors for conducting the two-finger test despite such an examination being held as violative of the right of the survivor, her physical and mental integrity.

It also directed all medical professionals from carrying out such a test and warned doctors conducting such a test would be liable to prosecution.

The court said the “gross insensitivity” shown by all those who designed the MLC cannot go unnoticed and held the proforma designed by the hospital as “bad in law” as it ignored section 53 A of the Indian Evidence Act and also violated the guidelines and protocol issued by Ministry of Health and Family Welfare for health professionals dealing with survivors of sexual violence.

The Court had summoned the Secretary(Health) of the state, who was unable to justify the proforma issued by the hospital, and said it was designed by some of the doctors and has been withdrawn immediately.