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    MP High Court awards compensation to woman who delivered a child despite undergoing sterilization

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    Date : 01/06/2018

    Meerabai Babbar vs. State of Madhya Pradesh &Ors.

    In this particular case, the petitioner underwent a sterilization operation at a Government hospital namely CHC Petlabad, Jhabua on 27/02/13. On account of failure of this procedure, a child was born to the petitioner on 1/06/15. The petitioner prayed before the Madhya Pradesh High Court for compensation to the tune of Rs. 30,000 in accordance with the Central and State Government schemes (the scheme issued by the Directorate of Health Services on 31/5/13 in particular).
    The respondent/state has not disputed the failure of sterilization procedure, the birth of the child and the Directorate of Health Services issued scheme dated 31/05/13. This scheme has been operational since 1/10/13. In the present case, there exist no documents directing the petitioner to take post-operative care. Thus, as per the decision taken by the High Court at Madhya Pradesh (Indore Bench) the petitioner is entitled to Rs. 30,000 in accordance with the Indemnity Scheme. The Madhya Pradesh High Court has relied on a similar case namely Smt. Komal Bai vs. State of Madhya Pradesh & Ors. in order to arrive at this informed decision.
    The Advocate of the State contended that there is no such method or technique that provides 100% assurance in case of sterilization operations and that there is always a microscopic chance of failure. Despite this, such possibilities of failure shall not supersede the indemnity scheme as framed by the Government of India. Consequently, the Madhya Pradesh High Court on 6/04/18 allowed the aforesaid writ petition and directed the Chief Medical and Health Officer, Shajapur to pay a sum of Rs. 30,000 to the petitioner within a period of 60 days from the date of issuance of receipt of certified copy of this order. In case, the amount is not paid within 60 days to the petitioner, the same shall carry interest @ 12.5% per annum from 24/08/2011 till the amount is actually paid to the petitioner. This is subject to verification of certificates produced by the petitioner.

    This case is crucial in today’s day and age. The judgement rendered by the Madhya Pradesh High Court is significant and necessary for public welfare, population control etc. In addition to this, personal health and financial standing of an individual also factor in and make it all the more necessary for such a procedure to be free from errors as the individual being sterilized relies on the assurance of the effectiveness of the operation throughout their lives.
    Therefore, it is essential for such procedures to be carried out effectively and efficiently in light of government initiatives and schemes. Failure of such an intricate procedure inadvertently results in economic and biological implications which must be adequately compensated for.

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