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Denied Abortion, Indian Rape Victim, 10, Gives Birth

  • VOA News

FILE - The Indian Supreme Court building is seen in New Delhi, Dec. 7, 2010. The Supreme Court denied an abortion request for a 10-year-old rape victim, saying it was "too risky" for the girl and the fetus. The child gave birth to a girl.

A 10-year-old rape victim in India, who was denied permission to have an abortion, has given birth to a girl.

The baby, weighing 2.5 kilograms (5.5 pounds), was delivered by Caesarean section in the northern city of Chandigarh on Thursday, a month after the Indian Supreme Court denied an abortion request.

The ruling was made after medical determinations concluded an abortion was "too risky" for the girl and the fetus.

The child was allegedly repeatedly raped by her uncle over several months. The uncle has been arrested.

The suspected crime came to light when she was taken to a hospital complaining of stomach pains and found to be more than 30 weeks pregnant.

She has not been told of the pregnancy. Instead, she was told she underwent surgery to remove a large stone from her stomach. The baby will be put up for adoption.

Dr. Dasari Harish said while it was a high-risk pregnancy, the delivery was uneventful and the mother and baby are both doing well.

India has a grim record of sexual assaults on children, with more than 20,000 cases reported in 2015, according to government data.

According to Save the Children India, 94.8 percent of child rape victims know their attackers; of those, more than 35 percent were raped by neighbors.

While Indian law permits abortion through the first 20 weeks of pregnancy, after that, it requires a doctor to certify that the mother's life is in danger.

In recent years, the courts have received a rising number of petitions seeking to end pregnancies after 20 weeks. Most of those requests are made on behalf of minors who are not aware of their condition or do not understand what happened to them.

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