Union Cabinet has approved the Medical Termination of Pregnancy (Amendment) Bill, 2020. The bill will amend the Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act, 1971.
It will be introduced in the budget session of the Parliament. Union Minister Prakash Javadekar said, for Medical termination of pregnancy, permission will be needed, from two doctors and one of them must be a government doctor. The limit of termination of pregnancy has been increased from 20 weeks to 24 weeks.
The Bill proposes for requirement for opinion of one provider for termination of pregnancy up to 20 weeks of gestation and introducing the requirement of opinion of two providers for termination of pregnancy of 20-24 weeks of gestation.
The Bill is for expanding access of women to safe and legal abortion services on therapeutic, eugenic, humanitarian or social grounds. The proposed amendments is a step towards safety and well-being of the women and many women will be benefitted by this.
Recently several petitions were received by the Courts seeking permission for aborting pregnancies at a gestational age beyond the present permissible limit on grounds of foetal abnormalities or pregnancies due to sexual violence faced by women.
The proposed increase in gestational age will ensure dignity, autonomy, confidentiality and justice for women who need to terminate pregnancy.