Indian rape ruling says rape contains marital rape and extends abortion rights to 24 weeks

Indian rape ruling says rape includes marital rape and extends abortion rights to 24 weeks

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CNN
 — 

Marital rape was defined as rape in a landmark decision by India’s Supreme Court on Thursday.

The country’s top court also stated that all women, regardless of their marital status, have the right to an abortion up until 24 weeks, the Press Trust of India (PTI) news agency reported.

The statements were made as part of an interpretation of the 1971 Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act, which originally applied only to married women or in cases of rape or a threat to the mother’s life up until 20 weeks.

Thursday’s order stopped short of criminalizing forcible sex by a husband but said abortion would be allowed, as such cases would be considered as sexual assault.

“It is only by a legal fiction that … removes marital rape from the ambit of rape,” the order read.

“We would be remiss in not recognizing that intimate partner…

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