Provisions of Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act 1971 inadequate to protect fundamental rights of pregnant women: Kerala High Court

4th Sep,2021

Provisions of Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act 1971 inadequate to protect fundamental rights of pregnant women: Kerala High Court

The Kerala High Court as of late hailed concerns in regards to the arrangements of the Medical Termination of Pregnancy (MTP) Act, 1971 while excusing a request by a pregnant lady looking for end of a 31-week old pregnancy (Indulekha Sreejith v. Association of India). Equity PB Suresh Kumar, declined to pass orders permitting end of pregnancy since the Medical Board had advised against it

The Court, at the same time, noticed that despite the fact that the MTP Act endorses a period breaking point to therapeutically end a pregnancy, there seems, by all accounts, to be a pattern of Constitutional Courts permitting it outside of the cutoff time. This, the Court believed, may be because of insufficiencies in the MTP Act the way things are presently. "The pattern of the choices delivered by the courts in such manner would show the insufficiency of the arrangements in the Act to ensure the principal right to life of the pregnant lady to its fullest degree, particularly having respect to the progression of clinical innovation for safe fetus removal," the request said. During the becoming aware of the case, the Court had orally seen that as of late the Bombay High Court had permitted end of a 33-week old pregnancy.

"Notwithstanding the arrangements in the Act as respects the external time limit inside which a pregnancy could be ended restoratively, having respect to the principal privileges of the residents, the sacred courts in the nation have been allowing end of pregnancies therapeutically if the duration of the pregnancy would imply a danger to the existence of the pregnant lady or grave injury to her physical or emotional wellness or there is a significant danger that the kid, whenever conceived, would experience the ill effects of genuine physical or mental anomalies as to be truly disabled," the request noted. The Court called attention to in its request that the MTP Act was corrected in 2021 to raise the external time limit for end of pregnancy from 20 to 24 weeks. End after that period must be with the endorsement of a clinical board that discovers genuine fetal anomalies. In addition, the Amended Act is yet to be advised, the Court said.

In the moment case, the candidate moved toward the Court, through advocate PT Mohankumar, looking for end of her 31-week old pregnancy. As per the applicant, albeit considerable fetal anomalies were analyzed, she had been declined end, as the external time limit endorsed for end of pregnancy under the MTP Act was finished.
On August, 17, the Court had guided the concerned specialists to comprise a clinical board and present a report to the Court. The report expressed that the irregularities were not deadly and end of pregnancy may bring about a live child. The Medical Board, in this way, believed against end of the pregnancy.