What are Frequently Asked Questions on Abortion?

questions on abortion via phone

Is abortion even legal in India?

Yes. And yes, this is unlike many developed countries where abortion is a controversial subject often involving political ideologies. The Medical Termination of Pregnancy (MTP) Act 1971 allows for medical termination of pregnancy (MTP) till 24 weeks of conception. Here’s what you should know:

  • An MTP within 20 weeks of pregnancy can be performed with the approval of one doctor.
  • A woman can seek an abortion if
    • Her health (physical and mental) is at risk because of the pregnancy.
    • The foetus has abnormalities that may lead to deformities and risks later.
    • The pregnancy is the result of rape.
    • The pregnancy is unintended and caused by the failure of contraception (pregnancy happened even though one or more methods of contraception were used). It is important to note that this clause applies only to married and unmarried people.
  • The abortion must be performed by a registered medical practitioner (RMP), whose credentials are as approved under the act, in a place that is approved under the act. Any RMP cannot perform an abortion.

Can I get an abortion if I am below 18?

Yes, an underage girl can get an abortion as long as the conditions in the law are met. In such an scenario though, the girl’s guardian’s consent is mandatory. The MTP Act defines guardian as “a person having the care of the person of a minor or a lunatic”.

Can an unmarried woman get an abortion?

Abortions in India, while legal, are driven by the concern for the health of the woman and the foetus. An unmarried woman, like the married one, can seek for health reasons and failure of contraceptives and also if she does not want to carry the pregnancy caused to her as a result of sexual assault.

The clause on health risks for the woman reads thus: the continuance of the pregnancy would involve a risk to the life of the pregnant woman or of grave injury physical or mental health. Thus, if the doctor looks at the unwanted pregnancy as one that would cause grave injury to the mental health of the pregnant woman, he/she would approve the abortion.

Do I need my husband’s consent for getting an abortion?

No. If you are 18 or above, you do not need anyone’s consent.

Is abortion not allowed after the 24-week limit?

It is not, as per law. However, if necessary, you may approach the courts. Such a request must have solid grounds though. Last year, the SC allowed abortions after the 24-week period because of health risks to the women or serious deformities to the foetus. SC has declined other requests too where it did not find any risk to the life of the woman and the foetus.

Do I have protection of privacy?

Yes, under the latest amendment to MTP Law, Privacy is accorded to abortion documents, so yes your information is protected.

Source : It includes the latest Amendments to the Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act 1971, passed in March 2021.

on 26th September 2021, the notification was circulated among the practising professionals.

21 comments Add a comment

  1. My girlfriend is 8 week pregnant can we do abortion please suggest we are very scared i already done ultrasound.

  2. I am 27 and ummarried. I am 5 weeks 6 days pregnant. I don’t want this pregnancy. Will I be able to get an abortion?

  3. I am 6 weeks pregnant and unmarried. Can I get an abortion surely? What are the chances of incomplete abortion?

  4. Sir/ma’am,
    My girlfriend and i had protected intercourse few weeks ago after 2 days of her periods.
    Now she is showing symptoms of pregnency like vomiting and weekness. She is not having her menstrual cramps which should have been started by now.
    We are waiting for one week till her periods start.
    But I am afraid that it might be pregnant.
    We both are 18+.
    I’m 18+8months old and she is 18+2 months old.

    If she is pregnant can she get an abortion?
    If yes then how and here?
    Please help

  5. My girlfriend is 2weeks pregnant…she is 22…can she get an abortion…
    If yes please tell how and where ..what are the procedures to follow …..
    What legal formalities do we have to follow?

  6. We had a unprotected intercourse two weeks ago but i didnt released my fluid in the private part of girl, I washed my private part with water between two sessions we gave a 10 min gap between two sessions but I’m afraid of that some websites showing that little bit of fluid can get pregnant I’m sure that i didnt released the fluid near the private part of girl but reason of my afraid is the a little bit can be there on my private part between two session(ie in that 10 min) may that small little bit can get pregency or not, plzz reply

  7. Her last day of period was on Dec 4th after that there has not been any sign of period as of today (Feb 13, 2020)

    Its been approximately 10 weeks since her last period

    She haven’t visited doctor yet.

    Incase she is pregnant, what actions can we take.

    And should she be visiting the doctor asap?

    She is 25, unmarried.

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