Father does not have fundamental right to collect deceased Son’s preserved sperm from Hospital

Father does not have fundamental right to collect deceased Son’s preserved sperm from Hospital

An interesting case had come up before the High Court of Calcutta by way of constitutional writ in the name of Ashok Kumar Chatterjee V/S The Union of India. The facts as briefed in the petition reveal that petitioner’s married son died of Thalassaemia. During his lifetime, the petitioner’s son had had his sperm stored with the St. Stephen Hospital, Tis Hazari, New Delhi. After the demise of the son, Alok Kumar approached the said hospital for releasing such sperm in his favour because he is the father of deceased sperm donor and he is the right person to get the same from the hospital after his death.

On receiving such request ,Hospital disclosed to the father of petitioner Alok Kumar Chatterjee on January 19, 2019 that,one of the purposes for storing sperm was to provide pregnancy to the donor’ wife.Under the circumstances sperm of deceased cannot be given to anyone else without the permission from his widowed wife .

Alok kumar then wrote to his daughter in law for permission upon which she did not respond at all .Due to the parental relationship of the Alok kumar and the deceased ,he asserted before the court that he has a right  to collect such sperm, irrespective of the permission of the wife of the deceased. He further requested the court for direction to his daughter in law to give ‘no-objection’. Or to respond to the request of the petitioner

Court Observed –

  • The petitioner does not have any ‘fundamental right’ to such permission, merely because o of his father-son relationship with the deceased.
  •  The sperm preserved at the St. Stephen Hospital belonged to the deceased and, since the deceased was in matrimonial relationship with his wife at the juncture of his demise, the only other person, apart from the deceased, having any right to it is his wife.
  • The father-son relationship of the petitioner and the deceased does not entail any such right of the petitioner to the progeny of his son. As such, the right espoused by the petitioner for himself is illusory
  • As far as the prayer for a direction upon the widowed wife of his son  to respond to the petitioner’s communication, it is  beyond the scope of the writ court, since the matter does not involve any violation of fundamental or statutory right, nor does the wife of deceased son come within the

Definition of ‘State’ as envisaged under Article 12 of the Constitution of India.

Court found the writ petition not maintainable

Accordingly, W.P.A. No. 4553 of 2020 was dismissed.

Ref. High Court of Calcutta

Asoka Kumar Chatterje Vs.The Union of India & Ors

W.P.A. No. 4553 of 2020

Decided on 19.01.2021


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