We set out the Abortion Act 1967 that applies in England, Wales and Scotland, considering its background, current application, recent reform of access to early medical abortion and proposals for additional reform.
This chapter considers ethical and legal developments around informed consent. The right of the patient, who is sufficiently rational and mature to understand what is entailed in treatment, to decide for themselves whether to agree to that treatment is a basic human right. The right to autonomy, to self-rule rather than rule by others, is endorsed by ethicists as a right to patient autonomy. The law has changed significantly in recent times, limiting medical paternalism and promoting patient-centred care.
This chapter continues the discussion of the evolving nature of the British approach to the princely states leading up to Indian independence and British efforts to create an All-India Federation under the Government of India Act of 1935, intended to ensure British control over India and undermine the strength of the Indian nationalist movement. It first discusses the intention of the British government in introducing plans for the All-India Federation and then analyzes the reasons behind the princes’ opposition to it, which ultimately blocked the federation from being implemented. The discussion of the princes’ refusal to accede to the Indian federation demonstrates their resistance to any external constitutional changes which might threaten their direct relationship with the British Crown, whose recognition as the paramount power in India served as the source of the princes’ sovereignty. This further demonstrates the princely order’s commitment to the layered sovereignty of British indirect rule and their opposition to any changes in the political status quo within the changing political environment of India, even in the face of efforts by British authorities to reform it. Under the federation scheme, the princes held grave concerns about the future strength of the central government and the extent of its authority over the princely states that acceded to it. Thus the federation, controlled by the political parties within British India, would become an intermediary between the princely states and the British government and could infringe on their political autonomy and sovereignty.
This chapter considers the regulation of human fertilisation and embryology. It considers the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Acts and the role of the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority. It considers the regulation of treatment of people unable to have a child and assistance that can be given to those who could pass on serious genetic conditions to their children.
This chapter provides a broad historical context of the princely states through the final years of the British Empire in South Asia. It explains the origins of the princely states, the nature of their relationship with the British government as the paramount power, how British policy towards the princely states changed over time, how the British colonial authorities administratively engaged with them, and the basis of the princes’ understanding of their sovereignty. The chapter begins with an explanation of the development of British paramountcy through the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, beginning with the treaties between the East India Company and the successor states that emerged in the wake of the decline of Mughal authority. These treaties formed the basis of Princely India following the imposition of Crown rule in 1858. This section continues with an explanation of how British paramountcy over the princely states functioned and changed over time, leading up to the efforts to create an All-India Federation in the 1930s, helping to show the multilayered approach to British rule in South Asia that underpinned the princely states’ sovereignty. The chapter concludes with an analysis of the inherent tensions and ambiguity in the relationship between the princely states and the colonial government.
This chapter looks at two dimensions of consent to medical treatment. When an adult is incapable of deciding for themselves whether or not to agree to treatment, how can treatment be lawfully authorised on their behalf? If an adult refuses to agree to treatment, can that refusal be overruled, either on the grounds that the patient ‘irrationally’ refused treatment which was in their interests, or because, untreated, their physical or mental condition threatens the safety of other people?
This chapter looks at the doctrinal principles of clinical negligence. The civil law of negligence is designed to provide compensation for one individual injured by another’s negligence. Clinical negligence involves certain special factors.
In this chapter we consider the schemes by which patients seek accountability when things go wrong with their or their relatives’ treatment. We consider the interaction between mechanisms designed to provide answers and redress for patients and those that seek to ensure learning to improve patient safety. In the second part of the chapter, we consider criticisms of the tort system and alternative proposals.
The concluding chapter discusses the princely states’ engagement with New Delhi after acceding to India on the terms contained within the Instrument of Accession. It shows how, in the face of continued political activity by the princely states’ subjects and despite Indian promises that their internal autonomy would be respected, the princes soon succumbed to the twin forces of democratization and integration, which led to the Indian government successfully dismantling the layered sovereignty of British colonial rule and the ultimate demise of the princely order. The chapter outlines the fate of the princes and monarchical notions of political hierarchy within independent India and Pakistan. It finishes up with a discussion of how the narrative and analysis of the princely states presented in the book, along with the four case studies, contribute to a broader understanding of state sovereignty before and after the transfer of power in South Asia and the debates and conflicts surrounding it. This discussion stresses the historical importance of understanding the position and status of the princely states through the transfer of power in 1947.
At independence in 1947, India and Pakistan confronted a vast mosaic of political entities: directly administered districts, tribal areas, European enclaves and the princely states ruled by India’s maharajas, rajas, khans and nawabs. The over 560 princely states dotting India’s political landscape were no minor or inconsequential feature of the British Raj, comprising 40 percent of its territory and containing nearly 100 million people. Yet India’s princely states is a relatively understudied aspect of British rule in India and the early years of Indian and Pakistani independence. Far from playing second fiddle to events in the British Indian provinces, the princely states had an integral role in shaping events leading up to and following the transfer of power. Within the British Raj, the princely states were autonomous, with recognized sovereignty through treaties with the British Crown. Therefore, each prince had to be convinced, cajoled and, in some cases, forced to accede to either India or Pakistan. As Indian and Pakistani authorities sought to assert the writ of the postcolonial state, the princes tried to preserve their sovereignty, setting the stage for political and military clashes based in competing conceptions of state sovereignty. Conquering the maharajas examines the often overlooked but essential history of Princely India through the tumultuous end of British Empire in South Asia and the early years of Indian and Pakistani independence. As the noted Indian diplomat K.M. Panikkar once remarked, ‘Any account of the last days of princely rule will sound incredible today.’