The linking of Aadhaar to seek abortion services poses risk of life to the life of a woman, doctors at Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research (PGIMER) at Chandigarh have stated. According to the latest paper published in British Medical Journal (BMJ), a 28-year-old housemaid was forced to seek services from an unqualified quack after being turned away by the government hospital at Chandigarh, because she did not have an Aadhaar card.

After having not menstruated for two-and-a-half months, she realised she was pregnant and visited a government dispensary. Weighing 45 kilos, the woman already had three children.

The woman could not undergo an ultra sonography (USG) as she could not furnish her Aadhaar card. She asked the government doctor to provide her with an oral abortion drug, but she was refused that without a USG. She was then directed to a private diagnostic centre for a USG but it was too expensive. One can get an abortion in a private centre without furnishing Aadhaar card. But, she needed the consent of her husband who would not approve. “A week later, she came back to the clinic where I was posted, profusely bleeding. Her heart rate and blood pressure had gone awry,” said Dr Sudip Bhattacharya, author of the BMJ paper.

She had visited an unqualified local physician after being refused abortion services at the government hospital. The quack had conducted the abortion very poorly, and she had to undergo hospitalisation and had to be transfused blood to recover.


Vidyut is a commentator on socio-political issues with a keen understanding of tech and policy. She has been observing and commenting on Aadhaar since 2010 from a perspective of human rights, democracy and technological robustness.

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