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"Grave Injury to Mental Health": Kerala High Court Allows Termination of 28 Week Pregnancy of 14 Year Old Rape Survivor

Navya Benny
19 Aug 2022 6:47 AM GMT
Grave Injury to Mental Health: Kerala High Court Allows Termination of 28 Week Pregnancy of 14 Year Old Rape Survivor
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The Kerala High Court on Tuesday allowed a Writ Petition that was filed to terminate the 28 week old pregnancy of a 14 year old rape survivor. The Single Judge Bench of V.G. Arun, while allowing the Writ, took note of the Medical Board's recommendation for the medical termination of pregnancy on the ground that, "The continuation of pregnancy may cause grave injury to the mental...

The Kerala High Court on Tuesday allowed a Writ Petition that was filed to terminate the 28 week old pregnancy of a 14 year old rape survivor. 

The Single Judge Bench of V.G. Arun, while allowing the Writ, took note of the Medical Board's recommendation for the medical termination of pregnancy on the ground that, 

"The continuation of pregnancy may cause grave injury to the mental health of the girl", the Court noted.

When the case had come up for hearing on 12.08.2022, the Court had ordered the constitution of a Medical Board for examining the victim and the plea for medical termination of pregnancy. It was on the Board's recommendation that the continuation would result in grave injury to the mental health of the girl that the Court allowed the same.

While issuing directions in this regard, the Court permitted the petitioner to get the victim's pregnancy terminated at a Government Hospital. The Superintendent of the Hospital was directed to take immediate measures for constituting a medical team for conducting the procedure, on production of the instant order of the Court.

The petitioner was also directed to file an appropriate undertaking, authorizing the medical team to conduct the surgery at her risk.

Importantly, the Court observed that if the baby is born alive at birth, then the hospital would have to ensure that the best medical treatment would be made available so as to help ensure the development to a healthy child. In the event that the petitioner is not willing to assume the responsibility of the baby, the State and its agencies were also directed to "assume full responsibility and offer medical support and facilities to the child, as may be reasonably feasible, keeping in mind the best interests of the child and the statutory provisions in the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2015".

The petitioner in this case was represented by Advocates Babu Paul and Murali Manohar

Worried By Increasing Child Pregnancies & Easy Access To Porn, Kerala High Court Stresses Need For Proper Sex Education

Case Title: XXXXXXXXXX v. Union of India & Ors.

Citation: 2022 LiveLaw (Ker) 438

Click Here To Read/Download The Order




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