Women Don’t Need Husband’s Consent for Organ Donation: MP HC

In a landmark decision, the Madhya Pradesh High Court has ruled that a woman does not require her husband’s consent to donate an organ to a relative. This ruling came after a woman sought to donate her kidney to her brother but was initially halted by hospital administration demanding a consent letter from her husband.

The woman, 45-year-old Anu Vanshkar, approached the High Court challenging the hospital’s insistence on obtaining her husband Ashok Vanshkar’s consent. Despite her family’s approval and the medical clearance given by doctors stating she was fit to donate, her husband’s refusal had stalled the process, putting her brother’s life at risk.

Justice Vinay Saraf’s bench stated that the Human Organ and Tissue Transplantation Act of 1994 does not mandate spousal consent for organ donation. The court emphasized that such a requirement was both unnecessary and discriminatory.

The court instructed the hospital in Bhopal and the relevant district and state authorization committees to proceed with Anu Vanshkar’s kidney donation process without her husband’s consent letter. The ruling has been hailed as a significant step toward respecting individual rights and medical ethics in organ donation.

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