Surrogacy is a term which means that a woman carries a child to term for its intended parents, with the help of different fertility techniques. And in return, the woman is compensated for carrying the child.
There are many issues involved with commercial surrogacy in India:
- Rights of the child occurring from surrogacy – In the case of baby Manji v/s Union of India, the Japanese parents were separated before the child was conceived. So, issues like who has the right over the child, the status of the surrogate mother, etc., came into limelight.
- Under-compensation and employment through illegitimate ways to get a child through surrogacy- It is mainly the poor women who are used as surrogates and they are paid very less in comparison to surrogates elsewhere in the world.
- Ethical issues involved- There was an instance in 2012, in which an Australian couple, who had twins by surrogacy technique, subjectively dismissed one while selecting the other. Such issues concern ethics and need proper focus through a law.In the wake of these issues, a draft Surrogacy (Regulation) Bill has been endorsed recently.
Features of the bill:
Surrogacy is an option for those parents who:
- are married for five years and cannot produce children naturally.
- don’t have access to other reproductive techniques.
- want biological children and can find a willing surrogate mother among their relatives.
The bill is a welcome step as it controls and regulates surrogacy rather than putting a blanket ban on surrogacy. Moreover, surrogacy and adoption laws should be synchronized so that for willing parents, in the absence of surrogacy,adoption can fulfill their parenthood.