Delhi HC states every woman deserves dignity during motherhood; grants bail to a pregnant woman

The Delhi High Court granted a pregnant woman accused of kidnapping and attempted murder a three-month interim bail, stating that every pregnant woman deserves the dignity provided by the Constitution throughout pregnancy

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Justice Anoop Kumar Mendiratta said that giving birth to a child while in custody would not only be stressful for the mother, but also have a negative effect on the kid.

In its order dated August 18, the court stated that it is important to recognise that a woman’s pregnancy is a unique situation since giving birth to a kid while in custody would be traumatising for both the mother and the child, who would then have long-lasting negative effects. Every expecting woman deserves the dignity guaranteed by Article 21 of the Indian Constitution during pregnancy, the court said.

“The Court is expected to take note of the interest of a child, who is not expected to be exposed to the prisons, until and unless there is a grave danger in releasing the petitioner on bail,” it said.

The court stated that under the criminal code, a person under the age of 16, a woman, or someone who is ill or infirm is exempt from the requirements that prevent them from being released on bond for certain crimes.

The jail rules also state that, whenever possible, plans will be made for a short release to allow a prisoner to give birth in a hospital outside of the facility, it was stated.

The petitioner was directed to Deen Dayal Upadhyay Hospital for delivery, the court also said, because there are no delivery facilities in the relevant jail, per the medical report.

The prosecution opposed the petitioner’s request for interim bail for six months on the grounds that the petitioner’s pregnancy was not a valid defence for expanding bail for an individual charged with a heinous crime and that there was a significant security risk to the lives and safety of the victims.

 

(With inputs from PTI)

 

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