28 July, 2021

Love Me Do

Hear voices from across the map to know how potent India’s sexual revolution is

Illustrations by Sorit
Love Me Do

In this crowded locality of east Delhi, every turn throws up an abortion clinic. Largely a residential area, Laxmi Nagar is Delhi’s abortion clinic central, and hundreds of young women come here every day to get abortions. This is where I met Aanchal. After missing her period for three months, Aanchal, a plain-faced college student of 19, stopped by the ‘ladies’ doctor. It turned out that Aanchal had gotten pregnant out of wedlock, with her boyfriend, in a closet in their college. Even though she had been sexually active with her boyfriend over the past several months, she never once suspected that pregnancy might be the outcome. Aanchal is not alone in her dilemma; in many ways she personifies the challenges that are plaguing India’s young. According to research, ‘first sex’ is more often than not unprotected for the majority of young people.

Scared, nervous and without the support of her 20-year-old boyfriend (a fellow student who stopped taking her calls once she told him she was pregnant), Aanchal did not have the Rs 30,000 she...

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