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SC allows woman in 24th week of pregnancy to undergo abortion due to medical reasons

The Supreme Court on Monday allowed a woman in her 24th week of pregnancy to undergo abortion after a medical report found that the foetus was without a skull.

Reports further said that the 22-year-old woman hails from Maharashtra and a board of specialists recommended abortion as they noticed that the foetus was under-developed.

Supreme Court of India. AFP

Supreme Court of India. AFP

This is not the first time, though, that the Supreme Court has given such a ruling.

In July last year, giving benefit of a provision in the abortion law, the Supreme Court had allowed a rape survivor to abort her 24-week-old abnormal foetus, on the ground that continuance of pregnancy would gravely endanger her physical and mental health.

The apex court gave benefit of the exception in law under section 5 of the Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act, 1971, which allows abortion after 20 weeks only in case if there is grave danger to the life of a mother.

During the hearing, a report by a seven-member medical board of King Edward Memorial College and Hospital at Mumbai which diagnosed the health of the woman was tabled before the bench in a sealed cover.

The apex court had said that the medical board has found serious abnormalities in the foetus which is around 24 weeks old and has opined grave risk to the mothers life if pregnancy is allowed to continue.

It had said that board has recommended that the pregnancy can be terminated.

Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi appearing for the Centre had said that their is exception under section 5 of the Medical Termination Act, 1971 and ceiling of 20 weeks pregnancy under section 3 of the Act will not apply in this case as there is a risk to mothers life.

With inputs from PTI

Updated Date: Jan 16, 2017 13:51 PM

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