The Kerala High Court has given permission to terminate a 24-week pregnancy of a minor rape victim and directed to constitute a medical team for conducting the procedure.
Justice V G Arun, while considering the plea of a 15-year-old, however, said, “If the baby is alive at birth,” the hospital shall ensure that the baby is offered the best medical treatment.
The court said if the petitioner was not willing to assume the responsibility of the baby, the State and its agencies shall assume full responsibility and offer medical support and facilities to the child.
The court granted permission to terminate the victim girl’s pregnancy at a government hospital.
“Having given careful thought to the vexing question, I deem it appropriate to lean in favour of the minor girl, rather than sticking to the strict letter of law,” the court said in an order issued on July 14.
The Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act, 1971 provides an outer limit of 24 weeks, beyond which termination is not permissible.