Sept 30, Kathmandu- In India, unmarried women will now be able to have an abortion.
The Supreme Court of India on Thursday made an important decision on abortion and gave all women, married or single, the right to have an abortion. The court said that under the Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act, everyone has the right to have an abortion between 22 and 24 weeks. A bench headed by Justice DY Chandrachud argued that the notion that only married women are sexually active is stereotypical. The bench said, "The right to abortion does not matter whether a woman is married or single".
Earlier in India, unmarried women were not allowed to have an abortion after 20 weeks or less than 24 weeks. The court has called it a constitutional distinction. The court has also given the right to have a safe and legal abortion if the wife becomes pregnant due to forced intercourse.
The Supreme Court of India has given this judgment in an appeal filed by a 25-year-old unmarried woman. The woman sought permission from the court to have a 24-week abortion. However, on July 16, the Delhi High Court dismissed the woman's demand. The woman said that she got pregnant due to consensual intercourse and could not give birth to a child because her partner refused to marry her. Then she approached the Supreme Court.