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India’s doubting fathers and sons embrace DNA paternity tests

| August 20, 2013

In 2007, a 28-year-old man was propelled from obscurity to prominence when he turned to the Delhi High Court to seek a public acknowledgement of paternity from a senior Congress Party leader, N.D. Tiwari. Rohit Shekhar spent five years trying to force the politician to take a DNA test, taking his case all the way to the Supreme Court, which ruled in his favor.

The high-profile nature of the case contributed to the public’s growing awareness of the role of DNA in establishing biological ties, and these days, paternity tests are commonplace, with private labs offering home testing kits for 10,000 rupees ($160) or less, with no need for a judge’s permission.

What social and political change will take place as a result of the ready availability of DNA tests?

Read the full, original story here: India’s Doubting Fathers and Sons Embrace DNA Paternity Tests

Additional Resources:

  • Mississippi aims to reduce teen pregnancy with cord-blood law,” Seattle Times
    Meanwhile, in the US, a recent Mississippi state law requires health-care workers to take DNA samples from umbilical-cord blood for any baby born of a mother younger than 16. The DNA may be used to try to track down the father and discourage statuatory rape. 
  • In the age of DNA, paternity testing hits the street,” Baltimore Sun
    The New York-based DNA testing company Health Street’s mobile clinic takes over-the-counter paternity tests one step further. They have a paternity-test truck. 

The GLP featured this article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion and analysis. The viewpoint is the author’s own. The GLP’s goal is to stimulate constructive discourse on challenging science issues.

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