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On Wednesday, September 23, the Orissa government refused to allow the termination of the pregnancy of a physically-challenged woman, accusing the state for her plight.
The woman is also mentally challenged and is a resident of a village in the Kujanga police station area in Jagatsinghpur district. She was raped by a local and her family filed a complaint on August 13.
When her mother approached the high court seeking termination of her pregnancy, it was gathered from medical reports that the woman was pregnant for over 20 weeks.
The high court demanded that the Odisha government pay a sum of ₹5 lakh by way of ex gratia within seven days, as an immediate measure.
The court claimed that the termination of the pregnancy would put the woman's life at risk.
Further, the high court directed the state government to pay a sum of ₹3 lakh if the woman, 22, gives birth to a boy. In case it's a girl, the amount would be ₹5 lakh.
The woman will also be entitled to get compensation awarded under the Victim Compensation Scheme.
"Considering the mental condition of the victim and financial condition of the family, utmost care of the victim is to be taken in continuation of her pregnancy. The best medical facility will be made available so as to ensure proper care and supervision during the period of pregnancy as well as postnatal care at the SCB Medical College and Hospital," News18 quoted the high court as saying.
"The entire transport, medical and medicinal expenses, including accommodation of the victim and her mother, if necessary, during treatment, shall be the responsibility of the Jagatsinghpur district administration," said justice Biswanath Rath.
In an attempt to help authorities handle similar cases in the future. The high court issued an 11-point specific direction to the state government, and 14-point general directives to other authorities, including the district courts, State Legal Aid Services Authorities, police and doctors.
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