Surrogacy Regulation Bill
Surrogacy is when another woman carries and gives birth to a baby for the couple who want to have a child.
What are the types of surrogacy?
• Straight (or traditional) surrogacy
The surrogate mother uses an insemination kit to become pregnant using the intended father’s semen. The baby will therefore be conceived using the surrogate’s egg.
• Host (or gestational) surrogacy
Host surrogacy is when IVF is used, either with the eggs of the intended mother, or with donor eggs. The surrogate mother therefore does not use her own eggs, and is genetically unrelated to the baby. It is physically more complicated and considerably more expensive than straight surrogacy.
What is the objective of the new draft bill?
• The Bill aims to prevent exploitation of women, especially those in rural and tribal areas.
• The Bill promises to ensure parentage of children born out of surrogacy is “legal and transparent.”
What are the salient features of the Surrogacy (Regulation) Bill?
• The new Bill proposes complete ban on commercial surrogacy but allows ethical surrogacy to needy infertile couples.
• It also prohibits Single parents, homosexual couples, live-in relationships couples to opt for altruistic surrogacy.
• The bill effectively bans foreigners to seek an Indian surrogate mother. This includes non-resident Indians (NRIs). The Associated Press reported that the Indian surrogacy industry is at “around $1 billion a year and growing”.
• For the surrogacy the couple should be married for at least five years before approaching a surrogate mother, according to the proposed legislation. Further, the woman has to be between 23-50 years of age and the man should be 26-55 years old.
• A surrogate child would have equal inheritance rights as a biological or adopted child.
• The surrogate mother has to be a close relative.
• 10 years of imprisonment, up to Rs 10 lakh fine for abandoning surrogate child, mistreatment of surrogate mother.