The 10-year-old rape victim who allegedly was abused by her stepfather had her unborn baby aborted Thursday in India.
The girl, only recently discovered to be pregnant, was about 20 weeks pregnant with her unborn child, according to The Express Tribune. Twenty weeks is the legal abortion limit in India; exceptions are allowed if the mother’s life is in danger.
Earlier this week, a panel of doctors in the Asian nation agreed that an abortion should be allowed in the young girl’s case, even if she is past the legal abortion limit, the BBC reports.
Now, The Hindu reports her unborn child has been aborted. Local police said the girl’s mother requested the abortion. It is unclear what the young girl’s wishes were in the matter.
Here’s more from the report:
“The procedure for the medical termination of the pregnancy of the girl was initiated around noon today [Wedensday], it may take 12 to 24 hours for the entire process to be over. The condition of the girl is said to be stable,” said Child Welfare Committee (Rohtak), Chairman, R.S. Sangwan.
Mr. Sangwan said the CWC had decided to treat the girl as CNCP (Child In Need, Care & Protection) under Juvenile Justice Act and help her family. “With the help of District Child Protection Unit, the CWC will provide ₹2,000 per month to her mother till she turns 18. We will also cover her younger sister under the Sponsorship programme,” said Mr. Sangwan.
The Hindustan Times reports more shocking details of the case. According to the report, the girl’s mother wants her husband, the stepfather who allegedly raped the girl, to be released from prison.
“Please set my husband free. These NGOs and activists promising big things will not take care of me and my children for life. They will go within two-three days. My husband will take care of us,” she told HT.
Mirage News reports the girl’s family discovered that she was pregnant last week, allegedly to her stepfather. When the girl’s mother suspected the abuse, she reported the stepfather to authorities and took her daughter to a doctor for a pregnancy test, the report states. The family is from Rohtak Town in Haryana, India.
The Times report continues:
The mother said she did not believe when first told that her husband – the younger brother of her first husband who died of kidney failure – had raped the girl many times. “When he (her husband) admitted, only then could I believe. I was shocked. He had been married to me for five years and I could see that he never looked at my three daughters with an evil eye,” she said.
A report in The Guardian also mentioned the mother’s request to have the alleged rapist released:
“The girl’s life is destroyed but what will happen to my other children? I need to think about their future too,” the daily quoted the mother as saying from a hospital in Rohtak, a district in northern Haryana state.
India has a gruesome record on rape, with the capital New Delhi alone registering 2,199 rape cases in 2015 – an average of six a day.
A UN Committee on the Rights of the Child in 2014 expressed alarm over the widespread sexual abuse of children and said one in three rape victims in India was a minor.
According to the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB), 93 women are raped in India every day, and most of the victims know their perpetrators. The NCRB reports the women typically are between 18 and 30 years old (15,556) and 14 and 18 years old (8,877). After rape, many victims report that their abusers forced them to abort their unborn babies to cover up the abuse.
Authorities in India have received a number of late-term abortion requests in the past few years. In January, the Supreme Court granted an exception for a woman whose late-term unborn baby was diagnosed with anencephaly, a brain malformation that typically is fatal, LifeNews reported.
In 2015, the Indian high court also gave an exception to a 14-year-old rape victim who was past 20 weeks pregnant. At the time, the BBC reported a team of doctors decided the girl was not fit to have a baby physically or emotionally.
As LifeNews previously reported, the first judge involved in the case, Abhilasha Kumari, ruled differently. He said it was a difficult decision but concluded that the unborn baby is innocent just like the victim.
Kumari said: “Whatever be the circumstances in which the child was conceived, whatever the trauma of the young mother, the fact remains that the child is also not to blame for being conceived. It did not ask to be born. The child is innocent, just like the victim, its mother.”
However, the Supreme Court overturned his ruling and allowed the unborn baby to be aborted.
LifeNews Note: File photo.