This study describes the fabrication of chemically crosslinked pectin-based LA-co-MAA hydrogels through free radical polymerization technique for the colonic delivery of oxaliplatin. Methylene bisacrylamide was used as a crosslinking agent and ammonium persulfate as an initiator. The successful fabrication and drug loading were confirmed through Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR). The thermal investigations through differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) and thermogravimetric analysis (TGA) suggested the higher thermal stability of the unloaded and OXP-loaded formulations as compared to the raw materials. X-ray diffraction (XRD) analysis showed a decrease in crystallinity after crosslinking. The swelling, drug loading, and drug release were increased with an increase in the concentration of pectin and lactic acid (LA) while methacrylic acid (MAA) displayed an inverse behavior. The in-vitro biodegradability was evaluated against lysozyme and collagenase. The results showed that the hydrogels were stable against blank PBS as compared to lysozyme and collagenase. MTT-assay proved that the blank hydrogels were cytocompatible while free OXP and OXP-loaded hydrogels displayed dose-dependent effect against Vero, MCF-7, and HCT-116 cell lines. The oral tolerability study in rabbits confirmed that the hydrogel dispersion was well-tolerable up to 3650 mg/kg of body weight without causing any histopathological or hematological changes when compared with the control group. © 2019 Elsevier B.V.