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Friday, June 25, 2021

Come, Make In India: The New Booming Surrogacy Industry

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been gloating over having given the Indian industry a new catchphrase: Make In India. But, hello, this has been in use and quite (re)productively in India for many years now.

It’s been a few decades now that fertility experts in India have been inviting foreigners to ‘Make In India’ – it being less expensive here. Besides, for an estimated 20-25 million Indian infertile couples too, assisted reproductive technology (ART) has proved to be a boon. To add Aamir Khan’s and Shah Rukh Khan’s name to this list as the latest celeb couple to have used surrogacy for parenthood won’t be unfair.

Surrogacy is just one single aspect of ART, but it also happens to be the most popular one, sometimes for some wrong reasons. Surrogacy came in limelight in India when an Australian couple abandoned one of their twin babies which was born to an Indian surrogate, just because they already had a child of the same sex. Debate about the rights of the child heated up more after this.

In 2012, the government set forth some guidelines making it mandatory for commissioning foreigners to have been married for at least two years before having a surrogate baby in India, thus shutting ways for foreign single parents.

Foreign parents seeking surrogacy in India need a letter from their embassy in India or their foreign ministry stating that their country recognizes surrogacy and the baby will be allowed entry in the country as their biological child.

According to a United Nations study conducted roughly around 2 years ago, the surrogacy business in India is roughly around $400 million a year, but some say that the figure could be more than twice of that.

However, there are certain disturbing practices involved in the procedure. For instance, before a pregnancy is commissioned, a contract is signed between the parties involved. Because of high illiteracy and certain malpractices to earn more money, more than half the women never know the terms of the contract.

But the question is whether money can compensate the emotional loss the surrogate mother goes through after the procedure? One cannot imagine the amount of pain and pressure a surrogate mother has to bear for bearing that baby. If not taken care of, it can have serious side effects and lead to DEPRESSION too.

This video by Mama Lab somewhat explains the pain that the surrogate mother faces…

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