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Consider Mental & Physical Health Of Mother As Well As Foetus: Calcutta HC Directs Constitution Of Medical Board In Plea Seeking Termination Of 34 Weeks Foetus

Aaratrika Bhaumik
11 Feb 2022 3:00 PM GMT
Consider Mental & Physical Health Of Mother As Well As Foetus: Calcutta HC Directs Constitution Of Medical Board In Plea Seeking Termination Of 34 Weeks Foetus
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The Calcutta High Court on Friday directed the Director of IPGME&R, (SSKM Hospital), Kolkata to constitute a medical board as per the provisions of the Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act, 1971 while adjudicating upon a plea of a woman seeking medical termination of her 34 weeks old foetus. Justice Rajasekhar Mantha was apprised by the counsel for the petitioner that a large number...

The Calcutta High Court on Friday directed the Director of IPGME&R, (SSKM Hospital), Kolkata to constitute a medical board as per the provisions of the Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act, 1971 while adjudicating upon a plea of a woman seeking medical termination of her 34 weeks old foetus. 

Justice Rajasekhar Mantha was apprised by the counsel for the petitioner that a large number of medical complications have been detected by three medical practitioners which are affecting the health of the petitioner as well as the foetus. Thus, the petitioner wished to terminate the pregnancy with medical intervention.

The counsel for the State submitted that as per the existing law medical termination of a foetus can be allowed only upto 25 weeks. The Court was further apprised that Courts have allowed medical termination of pregnancy in respect of foetus up to 27 to 28 weeks in deserving cases.

It may be noted that the Central government on October 12, 2021 had notified the Medical Termination of Pregnancy (Amendment) Rules, 2021 which extended the gestational limit for termination of a pregnancy from 20 to 24 weeks for certain categories of women.

Directing the constitution of a medical board, the Court observed, 

"This Court directs the Director of IPGME&R, (SSKM Hospital), Kolkata, respondent no. 4 to constitute a medical board comprising of experts, inter alia, in gynaecology and obstetrics as per the Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act, 1971 (as amended in the year 2021) to assess the medical condition of the petitioner and the necessity and advisability of the MTP at this stage."

The Court further ordered that the report containing the medical opinion must be submitted before the Court by February 15 and accordingly remarked further, 

"The mental and physical health of the petitioner as well as the foetus should be considered and opinion should be submitted to this Court as expeditiously as possible but not later than Tuesday 15th February, 2022."

All expenses towards the tests and other examinations that may be required by the Board shall be borne by the petitioner, the Court stated further. The petitioner was also directed to submit all medical documents of the foetus to the Director, IPGME&R SSKM Hospital, Kolkata, immediately. 

The matter has been listed for further hearing on February 15

Case Title: Nivedita Basu v. State of West Bengal 

Click Here To Read/Download Order 


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