India supports facilitating abortion laws to support women



New Delhi (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - As part of promoting female reproductive rights, the Indian cabinet on Wednesday backed giving women more time to seek abortion in a bill aimed at helping young, disadvantaged and raped women.

The government said the cabinet had agreed to extend the deadline for abortion to 24 weeks from 20 weeks, and the measure was slated to be presented to the new parliament session starting on Friday.

"This will especially help teenage girls, disabled girls, rape victims and others who face these problems," Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar told a news conference.

An abortion in India in conditional.

It is offered only after rape - about 90 cases are recorded every day - if there is a high risk to the mother, a high risk of disability for the child or if contraceptive failures.

If the bill is passed, the change would replace a nearly 50-year-old law and make India more compatible with countries like Greece, Finland, and Taiwan, which set a conditional maximum of a maximum of 24 weeks for abortion.

While many US states restrict abortion, there has been a liberalization trend around the world, with almost every country allowing it in at least some circumstances, according to the New York-based Center for Reproductive Rights.


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