ADF International


Mrs X & Mrs Y v. Union of India and Another

Date of most recent action: 15 Dec 2016

Petitioners attempt to revise and weaken India’s current law on abortion

What’s at Stake:

The lives of preborn babies


Two women, Mrs X and Mrs Y, are attempting to change the law on abortion in India. If successful, the lives of many more preborn children would be under threat.

The women have filed a Writ Petition under Article 32 of the Constitution of India. The petition challenges the constitutional validity of section 3(2)(b) of the Medical Termination of Pregnancy (MTP) Act 1971, which sets the upper time limit for abortions at 20 weeks.

As well as seeking directions to reconsider the 20-week limit, the petition also seeks a declaration concerning the expression ‘save the life of the pregnant woman’ in Section 5 of the MTP Act. The petitioners want this to include ‘the protection of the mental and physical health of the pregnant woman’, and situations where serious abnormalities in the preborn baby are detected after the twentieth week of pregnancy.

On behalf of Life for All, a non-profit organization, ADF International allied lawyers filed an Impleadment Application in the above Writ Petition requesting to become a Respondent in the matter. In September 2016 the Supreme Court allowed the application. Three months later, the court directed the counsel representing the Union of India to file an affidavit on what it plans to do in the matter.

Our Role in the Case

ADF International filed an Impleadment Application, requesting to become a Respondent, which was accepted by the Supreme Court in September 2016.

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