Pratigya Rights
Dear Reader,
Despite safe abortion being a basic right, there has been a long and hard battle seeking equal access to it. An important headway in this movement arrived in the form of amendments to India's MTP (Medical Termination of Pregnancy) Act, which came into force on September 24 this year, and the new rules as per the amendments were announced by the government on October 12. The extension of the gestation period limit, inclusion of special categories like rape and incest survivors, minors, etc. have been especially commendable.
However, as the rules go from paper to practice, there is a need for a robust implementation plan and standardised protocols to ensure new amendments don't impede access to safe abortion anywhere. The way forward is also to eventually move from a doctor-centric law to acknowledging bodily autonomy and rights of pregnant people beyond the gender binary. Better policies and laws that prioritise the sexual and reproductive rights of people, as well as ensuring access to comprehensive sexuality education, access to contraception, and safe abortion, are exactly what we will be working towards.
New MTP Rules:
Here's what you should know
The gestation period upper limit for terminating a pregnancy with 1 doctor's opinion has been extended from 12 weeks to 20 weeks, with the rule being expanded to include unmarried women as well.
The gestation period upper limit for termination of pregnancy with 2 doctors' opinion has been extended from 20 weeks to 24 weeks, for the following special categories:
  1. survivors of sexual assault or rape or incest
  2. minors
  3. change of marital status during the pregnancy (widowhood and divorce)
  4. women with physical disabilities
  5. mentally ill women
  6. the foetal anomalies that have substantial risk of being incompatible with life or if the child is born it may suffer from such physical or mental abnormalities to be seriously handicapped
  7. women with pregnancy in humanitarian settings or disaster or emergency
A state-level Medical Board will determine the request for termination of a pregnancy longer than 24 weeks in the cases of foetal anomalies.
Role of the medical board:
  1. To examine the woman and her reports
  2. To approve or deny the request for termination within 3 days of receiving it
  3. To ensure that the termination procedure, when advised by the Medical Board, is carried out with all safety precautions along with appropriate counselling within 5 days of the receipt of the request for medical termination of pregnancy
The Medical Board shall consist of the following -
(a) A Gynaecologist;
(b) A Paediatrician;
(c) A Radiologist or Sonologist; and
(d) Other members notified by the State Government or Union territory
We are also proud to share that our recommendation to streamline DCGI guidelines and MTP Rules for Medical Abortion method, which previously had a conflict with the earlier MTP rules with reference to the required gestation period, has now been addressed and extended to gestation period of 9 weeks.
Celebrating 1 year anniversary of #FindMyMTP social campaign
Around this time last year, we launched a service to enable pregnant people to find a qualified MTP provider near them anywhere in India. It is a carefully curated and authenticated crowd-sourced database of 30,000+ MTP providers across the country, constantly updating with new additions. As we celebrate its 1-year anniversary and look at the thousands of people not just from India but all over the world who have accessed this service, we can't help but feel pride at the lives we've impacted. #FindMyMTP has been awarded and recognised at many renowned platforms. It won the Silver at the Campaign India Digital Crest Awards 2021 under the Social Cause category, and bagged multiple awards at the ET Brand Equity Kaleido Awards 2021. Here's to more milestones, and more such initiatives!
Understanding #FindMYMTP in three simple steps
Step 2:
Enter the pin code of your location.
Step 3:
Get your email ID or phone number verified through an OTP.
List of MTP providers in your area is ready on!
You can also understand these steps in detail and share them in your network from this video.
Click here to Watch
Out With The Doubt:
Debunking Myths Around Abortion
Abortion has been stigmatised to the extent that a thick layer of false information, rumours, and unverified advice now surrounds it. It is important to debunk these myths so that people trying to have a discussion about abortion or considering it as an option do not have to go through the harrowing obstacles of wrong and potentially harmful information. As a step forward in this direction, we recently launched a social campaign series called #OutWithTheDoubt, where we make sure any doubts about abortion are shown the door. Pratigya Campaign has also designed a booklet in an interactive comic format to simplify, explain, and resolve the stigma around abortion. Follow the button to read it and share it within your network.
Social Chatter
October was full of important days that made us relook at critical issues from a whole new perspective and evaluate our progress when it comes to solving them. Here's a look at how we talked about some of the important observances this month:
In The News
Support Us
Work along with us to guarantee an equal right to safe abortion and effective healthcare for all.
Donate - Contribute to our campaign and keep the fight for reproductive rights and gender equality alive.
E-volunteer - Help us raise awareness about reproductive rights and gender equality by becoming an e-volunteer with us and contributing from your homes.
Partner with us - Come, let's work together with equal synergies to guarantee rights to universal access to safe abortion for all.
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