Telangana HC allows rape survivor to terminate pregnancy | Hyderabad News – Times of India

HYDERABAD: Stating that the life of an unborn child cannot be placed on a higher pedestal than that of the life of the minor mother carrying the child, Justice B Vijaysen Reddy of the Telangana high court allowed the termination of pregnancy in tune with the latest amended version of the Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act and also the powers of a high court to intervene in such issues.
The judge pronounced this order after hearing the plea of a 16-year-old rape survivor who approached the court seeking a direction to a private hospital in Hyderabad to abort the child. The coercive methods of the accused, the threats, and emotional blackmail have restrained the minor from revealing the atrocity to her parents who came to know of her pregnancy at a later stage.
The hospital said it needs permission from a court of law as the pregnancy is 25 weeks and is beyond the prescribed gestation period. The DNA samples, blood samples from the mother and fetus shall be sent to a forensic lab for preserving DNA, blood samples, etc. that may be required while trying accused before a trial court, the judge said. If sought by the victim, the HC legal services authority shall assist her in securing compensation, he said.
Stating that a woman must have absolute rights in matters such as this, Sravya Katta, the counsel for the petitioner said that the crucial consideration here should be that of a woman’s right to privacy, dignity and bodily integrity that should be respected.
The judge in his order said: “A woman has right to make a choice to carry the pregnancy, at the same time, it is her right not to carry the pregnancy, however, subject to conditions and restrictions enumerated under the provisions of the Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act of 2021. If the petitioner is not permitted to terminate the pregnancy, there is every possibility of the petitioner undergoing severe physical and mental stress, which may have adverse effects on her future health and prospects.”


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