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mains Test Series 2018
Q. Issue of abortion in India: Discuss the issue of abortion in India.
Jan 25, 2017 Related to : GS Paper-2

Ans :

Introduction-

Recently Supreme Court of India has relaxed the 20-week legal ceiling on abortion to allow a woman to abort her 24-week baby with anencephaly, a life-threatening congenital defect where a baby is born without some important parts of body.

Provisions of abortion in India-

India’s Medical Termination of Pregnancy (MTP) Act legalises abortions up to 20 weeks if there is threat to the mother’s life or her physical or mental health, or if the unborn baby has abnormalities.

Issue-

In India many women opts for unsafe abortions methods because they don’t know where or who to go because there are not enough legal providers. Many don’t even know it’s legal to abort up to 20 weeks.

Impact-

  • Unsafe abortions kill 10 women each day in India, where an estimated 6.8 million women choose methods each year to terminate pregnancies that threaten their health and life.
  • Unsafe abortion is responsible for 8% of all maternal deaths, which makes it the third biggest cause of women dying of childbirth-related causes in India.

What can be done-?

  • Awareness of about legal abortion very dismissal in India, hence there is an urgent need to spread awareness specifically in rural areas. 
  • We need to strengthen availability of data on abortion to make the services even more robust and responsive to women.
  • The Union health ministry has proposed to increase the number of skilled providers and relax the cut-off limit for legal abortions. These proposals are aimed at giving woman control over decision-making related to her life and body. Hence these must be adopted very soon.

Conclusion-

The issues related to abortion and lack of awareness about legal abortion has taken huge toll, now time has came to address this issue. Governments and NGO’s should come together to spread awareness about this aspect. Similarly government should bring amendments in MTP act to give women more control over decision-making related to her life and body.


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