SC allows Mumbai woman to abort 25-week old pregnancy

SC allows Mumbai woman to abort 25-week old pregnancy

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New Delhi, 10 Aug 2017: The Supreme Court on Wednesday allowed a Mumbai-based woman to terminate her 25-week old pregnancy after medical experts concluded that her foetus cannot survive on birth as it was without a skull.


A bench of Justices S A Bobde and L Nageswara Rao granted permission to Mamta Verma, 26, in the interest of justice, to undergo abortion beyond mandatory stipulation of 20 weeks under the Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act.


The court exercised its jurisdiction under Article 142 of the Constitution to pass directions as Verma apprehended danger to her life, having discovered that her foetus was diagnosed with ’anencephaly’, a defect that leaves foetal skull bones unformed.


“Upon evaluation of the petitioner, the Medical Board has on August 8 concluded that her current pregnancy is of 25 weeks and 1 day. The condition of the foetus is not compatible with life. The medical evidence clearly suggests that there is no point in allowing the pregnancy to run its full course since the fetus would not be able to survive outside the uterus without a skull,” the bench said.


Solicitor General Ranjit Kumar did not oppose the woman’s plea on either on medical or on legal ground.


The court also noted that the continuation of pregnancy can pose severe mental injury to the woman and no additional risk to her life was involved if she was allowed to undergo termination of her pregnancy.

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