SYLLABUS SECTION: GS II (POLITY AND GOVERNANCE)
WHY IN THE NEWS SC ALLOWS ABORTION?
The Supreme Court SC recently allows an unmarried woman whose relationship status changed during the pregnancy to abortion or terminate her 24-week foetus.
SUPREME COURT VIEWS:
- Allowing the petitioner to suffer an unwanted pregnancy will go against the parliamentary intent,
- And the benefits under the Act cannot be deny to her only on the basis of her being unmarry.
- The distinction between a marry and an unmarry woman has no nexus to the object sought to be achieve by the Parliament.
- Petitioner should not be deny the benefit merely on the ground that she is an unmarry woman.
- The law recognizes change in circumstances of the relationship status between a pregnant woman and her spouse—in the case of divorce and widowhood — it does not envisage the situation for unmarry women.
PARLIAMENTARY LAW REGARDING TERMINATION:
- The Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act,1971 (MTP Act), allows termination of pregnancy for all women in the first 20 weeks on the opinion of a registered medical practitioner
- Only certain categories of women are allows termination between 20-24 weeks under certain circumstances.
- Rule 3B of Rules annexed to the MTP Act, which was amended in 2021, specify seven categories of women who are eligible for termination between 20-24 weeks. These are:
- survivors of sexual assault or rape or incest;
- those who have a change of marital status during the ongoing pregnancy (widowhood and divorce);
- women with physical disabilities;
- mentally ill women;
- women carrying malformed foetus that has substantial risk of being incompatible with life;
- women with pregnancy in humanitarian settings or disaster or emergency situations as may be declared by the government.
SOURCE: INDIAN EXPRESS