US Federal Judge Temporarily Blocks Texas' Controversial Anti-Abortion Law
The law rewards at least $10,000 to anyone who sues any person who aided an abortion after six weeks of pregnancy.
US District Judge Robert Pitman on Wednesday, 6 October, temporarily halted Senate Bill 8, the controversial near-total ban on abortions in Texas, The Guardian reported.
In his ruling, Judge Pitman said that he "will not sanction one more day of this offensive deprivation of such an important right."
The law bans abortion after six weeks of a woman's pregnancy despite the fact that many women become aware of their pregnancy after that period of time. The law does not make any exceptions for rape either.
The law also incentivises citizens to become anti-abortion bounty hunters because it rewards at least $10,000 to anyone who sues any person who aided an abortion after the time period prescribed in the law, Reuters reported.
Judge Pitman, who was appointed by President Barack Obama, wrote that ever since the law went into effect, "women have been unlawfully prevented from exercising control over their lives in ways that are protected by the constitution," added The Guardian.
The Texas law is perceived to be the biggest test for abortion rights in the US in many years, as Republicans step up their tactics to overturn the historic 1973 Roe vs Wade case.
The judge's ruling is an early victory for the Joe Biden government, whose Justice Department had sued Texas over the law last month.
(With inputs from The Guardian and Reuters)
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