India court refuses abortion for teen rape victim

India's abortion law does not allow termination of pregnancy after five months


Afp July 24, 2015
PHOTO: REUTERS

NEW DELHI: An Indian court has denied a 14-year-old girl a late-term abortion after she was allegedly raped by a doctor in the western state of Gujarat, the victim's lawyer said Friday.

The Gujarat High Court on Thursday rejected the petition filed by the father of the girl, saying India's abortion law does not allow termination of pregnancy after 20 weeks, or five months.

The girl, who cannot be named for legal reasons, is more than five months pregnant.

"The father of the victim is a labourer and does not have enough resources to take care of the child to be born... The parents are yet to decide if they want to approach higher forum," the teenager's lawyer, Pradip Bhate, told AFP.

Judge Abhilasha Kumari said it was a "difficult" decision, but added that "whatever be the circumstances in which the child was conceived, whatever the trauma of the young mother, the fact remains that the child is also not to blame for being conceived".

"It did not ask to be born... The child is innocent, just like the victim, its mother," Kumari said.

The father's petition said his daughter became pregnant after she visited a doctor who injected her with sedatives and then raped her in February.

The police subsequently arrested the doctor and he is currently in custody.

In April, the same court denied an abortion to a 24-year-old gang rape victim, who was more than six months pregnant.

The woman later refused to keep the baby, giving custody to the state government of her newborn.

COMMENTS (8)

Masha | 5 years ago | Reply Nala: "It cannot survive on its own, and therefore it should be up to the mother to decide whether she permits the fetus to live off her." So does an old person who can't survive without the help of society, so does a sick person who cannot survive without the medicine, you fool. I have never heard a dumber excuse for abortion. The rape is a horrible HORRIBLE thing and I feel very sorry for the girl. BUT the child already came into existence inside her, it was already created. People saying that she has a right to murder her own baby only because she was hurt and doesn't want to become a mother yet makes me horrified by the norms of our society.
Nala | 5 years ago | Reply Shame on those of you who think women exists as incubators to house babies. If the woman does not want the child, she should not be forced to carry it to term. Adoption is not an alternative to pregnancy. Her body is forced to go through changes and will never be the same. And not even of her own choice, but by rape. A fetus is NOT the same as a baby. It cannot survive on its own, and therefore it should be up to the mother to decide whether she permits the fetus to live off her.
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