Bioethics News

Indian doctor sues husband over pressure to abort twin daughters

A woman doctor in India has sued her husband and a hospital for pressuring her to abort twin girls. In a first-of-its-kind case, Mitu Khurana, a 39-year old doctor from Delhi, claims that her husband, Dr Kamal Khuran, secretly obtained an ultrasound of her daughters when she was pregnant with the collusion of the hospital. He then insisted that she should abort them, sometimes violently.

“If, despite all the evidence I have, the accused are allowed to escape then no other women will ever try to prosecute for this type of crime,” Mita Khurana told The Sunday Telegraph. “Ultrasounds in India always happen behind closed doors because every doctor knows it’s a crime and will never give the results in writing. If I lose this case it will close the door to any women who want to file complaints in the future”.

According to the Telegraph:

Her husband, Dr Kamal Khurana, has vehemently denied the allegations which are the first of their kind to be brought under a law that prohibits the gender testing of foetuses which was introduced in 1994 to curb the endemic practice of aborting girls.

Despite the pressure Mita Khurana did give birth to twin girls. They are now 10 years old. The case has been dismissed in a lower court for lack of evidence.

The United Nations has described the dwindling number of Indian girls as an “emergency” which is contributing to violent sex crimes against women. A Dehli group recently investigated 89 hospitals in the city and found enormous gender discrepancies in birth rates.

The views, opinions and positions expressed by these authors and blogs are theirs and do not necessarily represent that of the Bioethics Research Library and Kennedy Institute of Ethics or Georgetown University.