• Surrogacy Bill 2016: Things You Need to Know

    Having children brings an increased sense of meaning into people’s lives, according to the Prime Minister’s national happiness survey”. Surrogacy empowers childless couples to have their own children, safeguarding the interests of these couples, a new bill has been recently passed featuring  new set of rules and regulations.

    The Surrogacy (Regulation) Bill, 2016, cleared by the Cabinet, only allows “Altruistic Surrogacy” for childless couples who have been married for at least five years. Then too, the surrogate mother should be a “close relative” of the couple, should be married and have borne a child of her own.

    Highlights of the Surrogacy bill:

    • Surrogacy no more an option to attain parenthood.
    • Surrogacy only allowed for legally married childless couples. Who could not conceive or give birth in the span of 5 years after their marriage.
    • “Surrogates” to be close relatives only, No payment in lieu of childbirth.
    • Single parents, homosexuals, live in partners and couples who are reproductively fertile cannot avail surrogacy as an option.
    • Punishment upto 10 years of imprisonment, 10 lac rupees fine to be levied.

    Industry overview:

    • According to UN records July 2012, surrogacy industry to be $ 400 million with 3,000 infertility clinics pan India.
    • UN also states that surrogacy industry is commercially inclined termed as “ commercial surrogate industry”
    • India, so far did not have any strict surrogacy policy hence,  attracted couples and individuals worldwide.
    • Due to good medical facilities, expertise and infrastructure, infertility clinics have mushroomed in large numbers making surrogacy a money making business.

    Mixed feelings have been received from the society and the medical fraternity. As many practitioners feel surrogacy was a safe and easy option for reproduction. The government has taken the right steps as commercial exploitation left many surrogate ladies with emotional and physical complications. Government also wants to safeguard the interest of children birthed by surrogacy, as many couples parted ways after becoming parents, and the couples did not have much attachment to the surrogate born,s as they had with their own biological progenies.

     

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