Mumbai, Sep 3 (PTI) The Bombay High Court on Thursday permitted a minor rape victim to undergo medical termination of pregnancy, observing that not aborting the foetus now would adversely impact her mental health.
Though the girl, a Class 10 student, is pregnant beyond 20 weeks, a bench led by Justice Nitin Jamdar, held that such pregnancy would adversely impact her mental health.
Hence, the bench permitted her to undergo medical termination of the pregnancy at the government-run JJ Hospital in the cit on September 5.
The MTP Act permits medical termination of pregnancy with the consent of one or more doctors within 20 weeks of such pregnancy.
One can terminate a pregnancy beyond 20 weeks only if courts conclude that the pregnancy poses a threat to the life or health of the mother or the child.
In the present case, the bench said that it had been established through previous judgements of the Supreme Court as well as several HCs that the 'mental trauma caused by rape was one of the grounds to permit medical termination of pregnancy after 20 weeks, more particularly in the cases of minors.' The HC noted that the medical board at JJ Hospital, that had examined the girl to assess risks associated with termination of the pregnancy, had told the court that carrying the pregnancy to term would cause much mental and physical trauma to the girl.
As per the plea, the victim's father approached the court earlier this month after he learnt of his daughter's pregnancy.
The girl, who is over 27 weeks pregnant, said she had been sexually assaulted twice between February and March this year.
An FIR has already been registered in the case at the police station concerned in Kalyan, the court noted in its order.
'The pregnancy in such circumstances would cause mental trauma as envisaged under the Act (MTP Act).
'Considering the circumstances in which the pregnancy has occurred and has crossed 20 weeks, we are of the opinion that the prayer for termination of pregnancy needs to be granted,' it said. PTI AYA RSY RSY