India rape victim, 13, seeks court approval for abortion

The Supreme Court of India

In the last hearing, the Apex Court had directed the Chandigarh administration to give an immediate financial assistance of Rs One lakh each to the victim and her mother.

The judges said it would be preferable if the abortion was carried out by September 8.

A 13-year-old rape survivor from Mumbai was granted permission by the Supreme Court (SC) on Wednesday to medically terminate her seven-month-old pregnancy, after considering a medical opinion of doctors.

The procedure will be carried out on Friday at Mumbai's JJ Hospital, said the girl's lawyer.

A Bill introduced in Parliament in 2014 that proposes extending the legally permissible period to terminate a pregnancy to 24 weeks is still pending.

"Section 3 (2)(b) of the Medical Termination of Pregnancy (MTP) Act prohibits abortion of a foetus after 20 weeks of pregnancy", it said. A medical report had said that an abortion was neither good for the girl nor her foetus. The doctor advised her to take the ultrasound test, which revealed she was pregnant.

The girl's family had approached the Supreme Court for the decision and on Wednesday a bench of three judges led by Chief Justice Dipak Misra chose to favour the girl's plea for an abortion.

Unlike the 10-year-old girl who was kept in the dark about her pregnancy and made to believe that her bulge was due to a large stone in her stomach, the 13-year-old "knows she's pregnant and kind of understands what it means, but not fully", he added.

According to police sources, until that moment, she had not informed her parents about the sexual assault.

A petition was filed by the girl's parents, seeking permission from the apex court for medical termination of her pregnancy, after they realised the reason of her obesity was not thyroid but pregnancy.

"How can a 13 year old become a mother?" questioned Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra.

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