A 10-Year-Old Girl Is Struggling Because Of India’s Abortion Law. Should It Be Changed?

We are talking about the case about the 10-year-old girl being raped repeatedly by her stepfather and a court now deciding on whether she should be allowed to abort her 20-week old foetus. India’s abortion law, made primarily to deal with the skewed sex ratio of the country, does not allow abortion after 20 weeks. You may also like: How The Maternity Benefit Act Will Help New MomsThis case has created quite an uproar on social mediaA 10-year-old who was repeatedly raped by her stepfather may be forced to give birth due to India’s abortion law https://t.co/rLHDe7C6a4 The New York Times (@nytimes) May 16, 2017India child rape victim in abortion plea https://t.co/Iy2pFprZSH BBC India (@BBCIndia) May 15, 2017Indias abortion laws need to change and in the pro-choice direction https://t.co/IVs6fHNCKk pic.twitter.com/Rwr7YyCUho The Wire (@thewire_in) May 11, 2017As a parent, this case boggles my mind.
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This is a case that has delivered shivers enough to last a lifetime for any parent. We are talking about the case about the 10-year-old girl being raped repeatedly by her stepfather and a court now deciding on whether she should be allowed to abort her 20-week old foetus.

Let’s just take a step back and reevaluate the above statement. A 10-year-girl in the prime of innocence is raped, by a person she trusts, her stepfather, and is now pregnant.

India’s abortion law, made primarily to deal with the skewed sex ratio of the country, does not allow abortion after 20 weeks. This is because it is around this period in the pregnancy that the gender of the foetus can be revealed. India’s deep-rooted preference for boys over girls has led to countless female foetuses being aborted after gender testing. This law states that a woman can’t abort her foetus after 20 weeks unless the woman is in danger.

Doctors confirmed her pregnancy and estimate it to be somewhere close to 20 weeks. They also estimate the girl, who is too traumatised to speak, is around 10-12 years of age. They have now left it to a court to decide whether the girl should terminate her pregnancy or not. Doctors reveal to a leading daily, “The board has found that both the situations —abortion at present and delivery — could be equally dangerous for the victim. So the court will be able to better assess what should be done now”.

You may also like: How The Maternity Benefit Act Will Help New Moms

This case has created quite an uproar on social media

As a parent, this case boggles my mind. I can’t believe what the little girl must be going through and how her mother who now has to listen to arguments about it being the ‘law of the land’ must be feeling. This just leads us to ask whether the law should be considered on a case to case basis or whether this girl should be allowed to go ahead with her pregnancy and become a mother at 10? Write in and tell us what you feel in the comments below.

Update:

A medical board of doctors appointed by the court has decided that the delivery could be dangerous and fatal for the 10-year-old girl. The trauma that this child would have to undergo if they don’t allow the abortion and force her to deliver will be terrible. So, they have submitted a report saying that the abortion should be permitted in this case. Normally, abortion after 20 weeks is not allowed as per Indian laws. There is still no date on when the abortion will be done.

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