Punjab & Haryana HC Allows HIV Positive Woman To Terminate 18-Week Pregnancy [Read Order]

Punjab & Haryana HC Allows HIV Positive Woman To Terminate 18-Week Pregnancy [Read Order]

The Punjab and Haryana High Court, on Wednesday, permitted an HIV positive woman to terminate her 18-week-long pregnancy.

Justice Rakesh Kumar Jain noted that the Petitioner had already been deserted by her husband due to her mental condition. He then ordered her to appear before the Principal of Government Medical College and Rajindra Hospital, Patiala on 22 March, directing the latter to "immediately proceed, taking into consideration the health and mental condition of the petitioner, for the purpose of termination of her pregnancy and shall also provide the pre and post-termination medicines and other facilities to the petitioner".

In an earlier order, the Court had noted that no evidence had been placed on record to show that the child would be HIV positive as well. It had observed,

"There is no dispute that the petitioner is HIV Positive patient. Section 3 of the Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act, 1971 provides that a pregnancy may be terminated by the registered medical practitioner, where the pregnancy is of 12 weeks but not exceeding 20 weeks, and they are of the opinion, formed in good faith, that there is a substantial risk if the child is born, it would suffer from such physical or mental abnormalities as to be seriously handicapped. So far, there is no evidence on record of the opinion formed by the Medical Board that the child in the womb, if born, would also suffer from the disease of HIV Positive."

The Court had then sought the opinion from the Medical Board, Government College, Patiala, on the question whether the child would suffer from any physical or mental abnormality or would be HIV positive. A detailed judgment by the Court is now being awaited.

Read the Order Here