HC notice to Delhi govt on plea seeking ban on medically unnecessary, sex-selective surgeries on intersex infants, children

ANI | Updated: Aug 25, 2021 12:09 IST

New Delhi [India], August 25 (ANI): The Delhi High Court on Wednesday issued notice to the Delhi government on public interest litigation (PIL) seeking a ban on medically unnecessary, sex-selective surgeries on intersex infants and children except in cases of life-threatening situations in the national capital.
A Bench of Justice DN Patel and Justice Jyoti Singh sought the response from the Government of NCT Delhi, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare and the Delhi Commission for Protection of Child Rights (DCPCR) and slated the matter for October 7, 2021.
The petition was filed by Srishti Madurai Educational Research Foundation through advocates Robin Raju, Yash Prakash and Deepa Joseph.
The petitioner said that the Delhi Commission for Protection of Child Rights (DCPCR) in January 2021 had given a considered opinion that the respondent Delhi government and its state Ministry of Health and Family Welfare should declare a ban on medically unnecessary, sex-selective surgeries on intersex infants and children except in cases of life-threatening situations but no decision has been taken on the opinion of DCPCR.
"That the issue of sex-selective surgeries or medically unnecessary normalizing surgeries has a long-lasting drastic psychological impact on the minds of intersex people and deters them from even seeking medical attention in future. This aspect is proved by recent news reports that examine the reasons behind the reluctance to seek medical help despite having symptoms of COVID-19 among a significant number of intersex people, " the plea said.
The petitioner also mentioned the Supreme Court earlier order where the top court held that "none shall be forced to undergo medical procedures, including sex reassignment surgeries, sterilization, hormonal therapy, as a requirement for legal recognition for their gender identity" and the Madras High Court earlier ruling where it directed the Government of Tamil Nadu to issue a Government Order enshrining the mandate of the Supreme Court so as to effectively ban sex reassignment surgeries on intersex infants and children.
The petitioner has urged the Delhi High Court to direct the respondents to implement the opinion of the Delhi Commission for Protection of Child Rights and to declare a ban on medically unnecessary, sex-selective surgeries on intersex infants and children. It also sought to direct the respondents to frame a detailed policy or guidelines specifying the conditions when can medical surgery on intersex infants and children can be performed.
The petitioner said that the inaction on the part of the respondent is illegal, and arbitrary, thus violating the fundamental rights of the petitioner guaranteed under the Constitution of India. (ANI)

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