How Realising the Baby Dream by Surrogacy in India Raises Legal, Social Concerns

Surrogacy in India
Although commercial surrogacy is legal in India, there are no laws or a governing body to oversee the rapidly expanding process. Surrogate mothers also face a social stigma attached to carrying children for other couples, as traditional Indian values have not changed as rapidly as the commercial surrogacy industry has grown.

India legalized commercial surrogacy in 2002. The combination of the low cost of infertility treatment in India nearly one-quarter of the cost in developed nations – and the modern assisted reproductive techniques available here make India a top choice for infertility treatments, according to the Indian government’s medical tourism website. The Confederation of Indian Industry predicts that commercial surrogacy will grow to be a $2.3-billion industry in India. In India, 42 percent of the population lives below the international poverty line of $1.25 USD a day, according to UNICEF. Surrogacy centers in India offers a chance for these women to bring up and educate their children properly.

Commercializing a mother’s womb needs to be looked at carefully because it isn’t just a financial transaction. When a monetary transaction takes place, the matter becomes even more complicated, as there are no legal provisions to safeguard the interests of the surrogate mother, the child or the parents-to-be. Although economic conditions in India make surrogacy cheap for couples who want children and profitable for poor surrogate mothers, health care conditions here make it a dangerous process.

If the woman dies or suffers long-term, serious consequences because of the surrogate pregnancy, then who is going to take care of her own biological dependents? It is agreed that presently there are no surrogacy laws, but all the reputed IVF clinics have been following ICMR guidelines.
Although Western cultures may accept commercial surrogacy, traditional Indian values condemn it, and surrogate mothers tend to become social outcasts. Specialized counselling programs for the to-be surrogate mother are organized. They are made to meet the commissioning parents. Recent publicity of celebrities taking on surrogacy has lead to acceptance of this practice amongst some.