The Supreme Court Upholds The 14-Year-Old Rape Survivor’s Right To An Abortion

The Supreme Court allows abortion for a 14-year-old rape survivor, prioritizing child welfare in a landmark legal intervention.

Attention India
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A 14-year-old rape survivor who was more than 29 weeks pregnant was given permission to have an abortion by the Supreme Court of India in a historic ruling. This decision underscores the court’s dedication to safeguarding children’ physical and mental health in extraordinary circumstances.


On April 4, the Bombay High Court denied the Mother’s request for a medical termination of the pregnancy. This led to the matter coming before the Supreme Court. The minor’s health and safety were a major worry, and the Supreme Court stepped in to remedy them because of how urgent the issue was.

Exceptional Circumstances:

The Supreme Court stressed the case’s exceptional characteristics and the necessity to protect children’s rights and wellbeing. Judges Dhananjaya Y Chandrachud and JB Pardiwala voiced serious worries about the girl’s possible physical and mental health risks in the event that the pregnancy progresses.

Article 142 Intervention:

The bench ruled that the minor’s pregnancy should be terminated immediately in accordance with Article 142 of the Indian Constitution, which gives the Supreme Court unique authority to guarantee full justice. Medical findings showing the negative impact of carrying the pregnancy to term on the minor’s health served as the basis for this decision.

Medical Evaluation:

Sion Hospital in Mumbai assigned a panel of physicians to assess the dangers involved in carrying out the pregnancy. In light of the distressing circumstances surrounding the minor’s pregnancy, the court emphasised the significance of a comprehensive evaluation of her physical and mental health.

State Support:

In an effort to assist victims of sexual assault and provide access to essential healthcare services, the Maharashtra government promised to pay the medical costs related to the abortion procedure.

Legal Framework:

The Medical Termination of Pregnancy (MTP) Act was used as the basis for the decision to allow abortions to continue past the customary 24-week mark. This law permits abortions beyond 24 weeks of pregnancy if the woman’s life is really in danger or if there are notable foetal abnormalities.

Criticism of High Court Decision:

The Supreme Court’s involvement was brought about by doubts about the suitability of the high court’s medical examination. There were concerns regarding the initial judgement to deny the abortion request because there was no comprehensive evaluation of the minor’s physical and mental state.

Emphasis on Child Welfare:

The Supreme Court’s decision demonstrates a wider dedication to defending children’s rights and welfare, especially those who are at risk because of events beyond their control. By placing the minor’s health and safety first, the court makes a strong statement about the value of justice and compassion in situations like this.

The Supreme Court’s ruling permitting a 14-year-old rape survivor to have an abortion establishes a noteworthy precedent for safeguarding minors in extraordinary situations. The court showed that it was committed to preserving justice and defending the rights of the most vulnerable members of society by using its extraordinary powers under Article 142. The necessity of giving child welfare top priority in legal and medical decision-making procedures is reaffirmed by this historic decision.


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