Supreme Court in favor of women big decision Giving medical termination of pregnancy act amended in. The Supreme Court said that women whether married or unmarried… they are legally entitled to have a safe abortion. MTP Act Amending the amendment, the court said that like married women, virgin women also have the right to have an abortion.
The Supreme Court has given this decision regarding the changes in the MTP Act and the rules related to it. Let us know what is this MTP law, since when is it applicable, what were the provisions in it till now and what changes have happened till now.
What is Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act?
Abortion has been given a constitutional right for women only in 41 countries of the world. India is also one of them. The abortion law was passed for the first time in India in 1971, which was named Medical Termination of Pregnancy ie MTP Act 1971. As the name of this act is clear that Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act is a law related to abortion Is. It allows medical termination of pregnancy. However, there are some medical terms and legal conditions for this.
Abortion is legal in the country, but it is not exempt in every circumstance. The ‘Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act’ in the country is in force since 1971. This act was amended in the year 2021. In the first few cases in the country, abortion was allowed up to 20 weeks, but in 2021 this law was amended and this time limit was increased to 24 weeks. However, in some special circumstances, abortion is allowed even after 24 weeks.
Abortion in India is allowed in three time-categories –
From 0 to 20 weeks of pregnancy:
If a woman is not mentally ready to become a mother, then she can get an abortion from 0 to 20 weeks of pregnancy. If the contraceptive method or device has failed and the woman does not want to become pregnant, she can still have an abortion. In such a situation, it is necessary to register a doctor for abortion.
From 20 to 24 weeks gestation:
If there is a threat to the life of the mother or the child, the mental or physical health of the mother and child, then abortion can be allowed up to 20 to 24 weeks of gestation. In such cases it is necessary to have two doctors.
24 weeks after conception:
In such a situation, permission is given only in special circumstances. Abortion can be allowed even after 24 weeks if the woman has been a victim of sexual assault/rape and has resulted in termination of pregnancy. Abortion can be allowed after 24 weeks of pregnancy even if the woman is disabled.
Permission can also be given if the chances of survival of the child are very low or the life of the mother is in danger. Along with this, a condition is also a change in the marital status of the woman during pregnancy. For example, if a woman gets divorced or becomes a widow during pregnancy, she can be allowed to have an abortion. In these circumstances, the decision to allow abortion is taken by the medical board.
What happened in the Act?
There is a rule in the Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act – 3B, in which a woman is allowed to have an abortion after 24 weeks. There are some categories in these. The same rule was challenged in the petition as to why unmarried women were excluded from it. Hearing this petition, the Supreme Court has now given rights to unmarried women by including them in it.
The Supreme Court has extended Rule 3-B of the Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act. The implication of this decision is that now even unmarried women have got the right of abortion up to 24 weeks. In normal cases, the right of abortion for pregnancy more than 20 weeks and less than 24 weeks was till now only married women, which now also got unmarried.
The court said that allowing an unmarried woman to become a victim of an unwanted pregnancy would be contrary to the purpose and spirit of the MTP Act. The Supreme Court said that after the amendment in 2021, the word partner has been used instead of husband in Section-3 of this Act, which shows the intention to bring unmarried women in the Act. The point to be kept in mind is that it is necessary to constitute a medical board in certain circumstances.
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