MUMBAI: Forcing a woman to undergo virginity test is unfair. It is like raising a finger on her identity. This is against her right to privacy as well. So such a practice will be a punishable offence from now on. The Maharashtra government’s pronouncement on Wednesday.
Certain communities in the state follow such a custom. As per this custom a newly-wed woman has to prove that she was virgin before the marriage.
Ranjeet Patil, the Minister of State for Home, met a delegation of some social organisations on the issue on Wednesday.
Shiv Sena spokesperson Neelam Gorhe was also a part of the delegation.
“Virginity test will be considered a form of sexual assault. After consultations with the Law and Judiciary department, a circular will be issued declaring it a punishable offence”. The minister told reporters later.
The demeaning custom is allegedly followed in the Kanjarbhat community among others. This hurts the identity of women. Practice of proving virginity or for some people it is purity is in contrast with natural justice. Some people from the community have launched an online campaign against it. The campaign is a huge success. It is attracting the attention of people from different corners of the nation.
Minister Ranjeet Patil, meanwhile, also said his department will hold bi-monthly review of cases of sexual assault. This process is to ensure the progress of dealing such cases in the courts.