India – A change in the abortion law?

A change in the abortion law?

August 8, 2019
By Kerean Watts

Could India’s abortion law soon change? Steps may be taken towards amending the Medical Termination of Pregnancy (MTP) Act, as the Centre has informed the Delhi High Court it is consulting with ministries on the same.

Social activist Amit Sahni filed a public interest litigation (PIL) before the High Court earlier this year, seeking that the gestation period in which abortion is permitted be extended to between 24 and 26 weeks. Currently, Indian law permits abortion only in the first twenty weeks of pregnancy in cases where “the pregnancy would involve a risk to the life of the pregnant woman or of grave injury physical or mental health; or there is a substantial risk that if the child were born, it would suffer from such physical or mental abnormalities as to be seriously handicapped.” This would require the assent of one medical practitioner in the first twelve weeks and two medical practitioners thereafter.