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Delhi High Court adjourns hearing on abortion of 21-week foetus, says decision after AIIMS report

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The Delhi High Court on Monday adjourned the hearing on a petition filed by a pregnant woman, seeking permission to undergo medical termination of her pregnancy, having completed 21 weeks of Gestation Period.

A single-judge bench of Justice Rekha Palli listed the matter for September 21, on request of Advocate Sneha Mukherjee, appearing on behalf on the petitioner, who informed the court that the Doctors of Medical Board of AIIMS have stated that they can give their opinion, once certain tests are conducted. Advocate Mukherjee further stated that the said tests have been performed and the results are awaited, which will take around 6-7 days.

Justice Palli expressed her displeasure at the delay, as the matter was related to medical termination of pregnancy and delay could lead to complications. The woman is seeking medical termination of her pregnancy, as her foetus is suffering from various abnormalities, including nuchal edema & a bilateral cleft lip and palate. She has placed on record, an ultrasound report dated September 4, 2021, confirming the same.

On September 7, 2021, the High Court had directed the Medical Superintendent of AIIMS to constitute a Medical Board of Doctors to examine the petitioner and furnish its report on the feasibility of the petitioner undergoing medical termination of her pregnancy within five days.

The petition has been filed and argued by Advocate Sneha Mukherjee, who has handled more than a dozen medical termination of pregnancy cases and is a vocal supporter of absolute rights of a woman, in matters of pregnancy.

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