Kochi, Nov 4 (IANS) The Kerala High Court on Friday observed that there can be no restriction on a woman’s right to exercise her reproductive choice, to either procreate or abstain from it.
The court took the route of an earlier apex court judgement where it was held that as per Article 21 of the Constitution of India, a woman has right to make reproductive choice as it is a dimension of her personal liberty.
“There can be no restriction on a woman’s right to exercise her reproductive choice to either procreate or to abstain from procreating. A woman’s right to make reproductive choice being a dimension of her personal liberty, as understood under Article 21 of the Constitution of India,” the order said.
It ruled in a petition of a 23-year-old MBA student seeking termination of her pregnancy from consensual sex with her classmate.
The petitioner claimed after realising that she was pregnant, she was disturbed and moreover the classmate with whom she was in a relation had left the country for higher studies and she decided to terminate her pregnancy.
But none of the hospitals she approached was ready to do the termination as it had crossed 24 weeks and hence she approached the court.
After considering the opinion of the medical board that the continuation of the pregnancy may cause risk to the petitioner’s life, the court permitted her to terminate the pregnancy at a government hospital and directed the hospital concerned to constitute a medical team for conducting the procedure.
In its order, the court also stated that if the baby is born alive, the hospital shall ensure that the baby is offered the best medical treatment available.