Abortion has consistently been a questionable issue since old occasions. Previously, Abortion was considered as an unthinkable in India. In present day times, the well-known propagator of peacefulness, Mahatma Gandhi cited, it appears to me clear as light that Abortion would be a wrongdoing . Yet, with evolving times, the belief system of individuals has gotten progressively liberal and along these lines numerous laws have created, legitimizing premature birth in India. Abortion in India is legitimate in specific conditions. It very well may be performed on different grounds until 24 weeks of pregnancy. In outstanding cases, a court may permit an end following 24 weeks. The Right to Abortion unquestionably falls under the domain of Article 21 of the Indian Constitution which guarantees the Right to life and Personal freedom aside from as indicated by methodology set up by law. On account of premature birth, the lady similarly appreciates the Right to life and settle on free decisions upon what she needs to do with her body, as some other resident of India.

The analysis encompassing this issue is whether it falls under the domain of the Indian Constitution or has it neglected to meet the criteria of being perceived as a principal right. In the Indian Penal Code, 1860, premature birth, which is expressed as Causing Miscarriage is considered as a curative offense. It relates to a ‘lady who makes herself prematurely deliver’. Among numerous different rights that ladies have been allowed in India, Right to Abortion must be given as equivalent load as the Right to consider a youngster and get pregnant. Abortion till date has been one of the most disputable issues in the field of biomedical morals. It is a subject that has been vigorously examined far and wide and holds very disparate suppositions as far its legitimateness is concerned.


  1. Manual Vacuum Aspiration (MVA)
  2. Electric Vacuum Aspiration (EVA)
  3. Medical Methods of Abortion (MMA)
  4. Mifepristone (RU 486)
  5. Misoprostol
  6. Dilation and Curettage (D&C)


  1. The Indian Penal Code, 1860
  2. Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act, 1971
  3. The Constitution of India


The Indian Penal Code, 1860, pondering over the social, obsessive and clinical consequences of Abortion, pronounces encouraged premature birth as illicit all through India.

Section 312 of the Indian Penal Code[1], 1860 explains miscarriage as causing unsuccessful labor. In any case, the word miscarriage is no place utilized right now. Sections 312 to 316 of the IPC 1860 have made initiated miscarriage a criminal offense, aside from in cases to spare the life of the mother. It has utilized the articulation making unsuccessful labor allude to miscarriage. Abortion would give unsuccessful labor an embodiment of aim. Unnatural birth cycle in fact would mean unconstrained Abortion, though, intentionally causing unsuccessful labor, which is condemned under Section 312, will represent criminal abortion.

It applies to a lady who does unnatural birth cycle deliberately. An unmistakable division among the two is deficient. The unborn kid in the belly must not be devastated except if the obliteration is for the sole reason to safeguard the life of the mother.

Punishment: Imprisonment for a long time as well as installment of fine. The discipline may even stretch out to a time of seven years combined with installment of fine in situations where the lady was brisk with the kid (hatchling’s movement is felt by mother).


As expressed previously, the Right to abortion may go under the Article 21, whenever exposed to translations. Article 21 directs the Right to life and individual freedom. In this manner, the Constitution of India likewise discusses the possibility of premature birth. It can likewise be comprehended that a lady, who has been given such a right, may make the most of her own freedom and modify her body in any capacity she can. Notwithstanding, the quandary that emerges is whether Right to life incorporates the privilege to Abortion. Another situation in the field of abortion laws is the privilege of the mother to prematurely end opposite the privilege of the unborn youngster to live.


Article 1 and 3 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights expresses that all people are brought into the world free and are rises to in rights and nobility. All reserve the option to life, freedom and security.


By passing the Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act, 1971, the Indian Parliament sanctioned abortion in India. As per the demonstration, a pregnancy must be ended under a couple of conditions, for example, in circumstances where the continuation of a pregnancy would include dangers to the life of the mother or include grave physical or mental injury to the lady. The Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act, 1971 further discussions about the circumstances where a restorative Abortion can be done by an enlisted clinical professional.

  12 WEEKS According to Section 3(2) of the Act, premature birth is allowed as long as 12 weeks of pregnancy
  Between 12 and 20 weeks pregnancy can be ended if not less two enlisted clinical specialists are of the supposition that the end is in compliance with common decency of the mother and youngster. Clinical conclusion, as expressed by the demonstration, must be given in compliance with common decency. The term great confidence isn’t portrayed in the concerned Act, however in the IPC,1860, great confidence implies a demonstration to be done in due consideration and alert.
  Post 20 weeks termination of pregnancy isn’t allowed


In the ongoing judgment of the Supreme Court by a nine-judge seat in Justice K. S. Puttaswamy case[2], which collectively insisted right to security as a basic right under the Constitution, emphasized Suchita Srivastava s case and held that the lady s right to abortion falls inside the domain of right to protection and consequently the entirety of her conceptive rights ought to be guaranteed by the state. Hence, it has been set up by the courts that the lady s right to Abortion is a principal right.

The reliability of the MTP Act has been tested consistently on different grounds. In a pending case under the watchful eye of the preeminent court in Swati Agarwal and Ors. v. Association of India[3] , The Petitioners documented a PIL testing the legitimacy of Section 3(2), 3(4) and 5 of the MTP Act as violative of Article 14 and 21 of the Indian Constitution. Section 3(2), 3(4)(a) and segment 5 was tested as violative of Article 21.

MTP Act: Grounds for Petitioner’s Challenge

Section Permissible duration Conditions Grounds
Section 3(2)(a) First trimester (pregnancy doesn’t surpass 12 weeks) A clinical specialist must opine that proceeding with the pregnancy chances: the lady’s life or may cause grave mental or physical injury, or that the kid conceived might be genuinely incapacitated because of physical or mental abnormalities.  Violates Article 21 and imposes such serious limitations that privilege gets insignificant curtails security however is invalid as it bombs the trial of sensibility and proportionality (Abortion in the main trimester is sheltered, so the State has no real enthusiasm for seriously shortening conceptive decision and extreme limitation is disproportional to the enactment’s expected point of forestalling maternal mortality)
Section 3(2)(b) Between 12-20 weeks of pregnancy Two enrolled clinical professionals must opine that proceeding with the pregnancy hazards: the lady’s life or may cause grave mental of physical injury, or that the kid conceived might be truly crippled because of physical or mental abnormalities.  Restriction to 20 weeks is over the top and brutal. it is preposterous to expect to recognize all possibilities that may hurt lady’s physical or emotional well-being or variations from the norm of the hatchling inside 20 weeks of the pregnancy, particularly given the absence of hearty wellbeing framework in huge regions of the nation
Elucidation 2 to Section 3(2) (No limitation on pregnancy length) Pregnancy must be brought about by disappointment of preventative gadget or technique by a wedded lady or her husband Violates Article 14. Discriminates against unmarried ladies
Section 3(4)(a) (No limitation on pregnancy length) Guardian’s assent important if minor or intellectually sick individual needs to practice decision of abortion.   Violates Article 21 Gives watchman complete self-sufficiency over person’s privilege of conceptive decision
Section 5 Past 20 weeks Registered clinical professional accepts that premature birth is important to spare the lady’s life         Arbitrary and disproportional; disregards Article 21. Imposes high edge of prompt need to spare life Fails to allow fetus removal when fetal variations from the norm are distinguished following 20 weeks, when pregnancy is brought about by assault, while proceeding with the pregnancy may cause grave physical or mental injury to the lady and so on.


Abortion laws are not totally liberal in India. Advancement is expected to suit the present necessities so as to ensure the privileges of the ladies in the Country. Disregarding being an ethical issue, abortion is to a greater degree an established issue. The constitution has cherished ladies with total option to pick anything she desires to do with her body. No individual can direct to her what she ought to do in issues relating to propagation. Meddling with her conceptive decisions is only falling-out and intrusion of her security and individual freedom. Despite the fact that the MTP Act has offered opportunity to ladies in abortion related issues, her opportunity is as yet confined and restricted to the deficiencies of the Act as observed previously. The illegal arrangements encroaching the rights ensured by the constitution to ladies in the nation must be discarded. The MTP (Amendment) Bill 2020 is a stage towards the correct heading.

[1] The Indian Penal Code, 1860, No. 45, Acts of Parliament, 1860

[2] Justice K. S. Puttaswamy (Retd) & Anrs. v. Union of India and Ors., (2017) 10 S.C.C. 1

[3] Swati Agarwal & Ors. (1-7-2019) W.P. (C) 825/2019 Supreme Court


Shalini Ramachandran, 5th Year, Tamil Nadu Dr. Ambedkar Law University.

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