Ireland Votes ‘Yes’ To Abortion: How An Indian Woman’s Tragic Death Inspired Voters


Ireland’s Eighth Amendment prohibits the termination of pregnancy which includes cases such as: rape, incest or fatal foetal abnormality. Well not anymore, on Saturday 26 May, 3.4 million Irish voters took to the stands to vote for or against the ban. Over 66% voted ‘Yes.’ This means in six months time women living in Ireland can now have the right to decide what they want to do with their pregnancy.

From a religious stand point, this decision might sound outrageous. Who would want to get rid of a cute bundle of joy?” But what if this ‘bundle of joy’ will eventually put the life of the expectant mother at risk?

Savita Halappanavar‘s story is one of such cases. In 2012, the Indian dentist passed away at the age of 31 at the University Hospital Galway in Ireland following a septic miscarriage. This happened after she was denied an abortion.  Savita was 17 weeks pregnant when she was admitted to the hospital with back pain.  After initially being released, she was readmitted hours later and, after further examination, it was clear a miscarriage was inevitable.

Savita, fearing that her life was in danger requested for her pregnancy to be terminated but she was denied. Within days, the dentist died from an infection, having suffered a miscarriage four days earlier.



Fast forward to 2018 and women in Ireland chant Savita’s name as the country uplifts the ban on abortion.





Savita’s father has requested that the new law should be named after his deceased daughter. He said:

“We are really, really happy. We have one last request, that the new law, that it is called ‘Savita’s law’. It should be named for her.”

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