Friday, November 16, 2007

India: Man convicted of forced abortion

Wow. They have a law specifically against forced abortion in India. He'll probably only get "time served" as the couple is legally married, but he could have faced life in prison.

How enlightened is that?

Assam villager Hasi Mohan Barman had a “love affair” with a woman. After the woman became pregnant with his child, villagers put pressure on Barman to marry her. He, rather, asked her to abort the child. She refused.

One night Barman took her to the pharmacy of his friend Abinash Biswas, who aborted the child without her consent after giving her anaesthesia.

Barman kept her at the friend’s pharmacy for about nine days, after which she filed a police complaint. Barman was arrested and charged under section 313 of IPC, aborting a child without the mother’s consent. The offence carries a maximum sentence of life, besides fine.

This doesn't appear to be as far-fetched as it looks. I've heard of at least one other case in the US where a man forced an abortion on a woman by drugging her then having sex so that he could abort the baby.

It's not really surprising, given that abortion is now available in pill form. It makes exploitation and abuse all the easier.