In a recent matter of Ruma Imran @ Shadab Sahab & Anr V. The State of Bengal & Ors the Calcutta HC following the previous precedent has observed that termination of the pregnancy even after the period of 20 Weeks must be allowed if there is a congenital defect which would not be conducive to health life of a child. The court held the observation in the matter where the petitioner Ruma Iran is having a pregnancy of 25+ weeks and her medical report contained the findings that “The unborn child is suffering from gross congenital anomaly (Hydrocephalus) which is not compatible with normal and healthy life after birth.”
The HC bench in its decision interpreted Section 3 of Medical Termination of the pregnancy Act, 1971 which prohibits the termination of pregnancy in absolute terms beyond the period of 20 weeks. The court on reading the section along with the objects of the legislation and also upon relying on the division judge bench decision of Calcutta HC in the matter of Suparna Debnath & Anr V. State of Bengal directed the petitioner to terminate her pregnancy. Court also directed the state to take suitable steps for the same keeping paramount the welfare of the mother and her mental and physical health. The Court also gave direction to complete entire exercise within one week from the date of order.
The single judge bench of Hon’ble Justice Protik Prakash Banerjee while delivering the judgment remarked that the medical report in the instant case is taken as gospel truth while passing the order.