Is Surrogacy Legal In India?

Is Surrogacy Legal In India?

Surrogacy is when a woman carries a baby for an infertile couple, nourishes the embryo in her womb for the couple, carries the fetus for nine months, and hands over the well-developed child to the intended couple. Surrogacy in India is much more exceptional, meaning that couples cannot carry or conceive naturally in the way of pregnancy and still find it difficult to reach the right person for their surrogacy procedure. Many people wonder- Is Surrogacy Legal In India? This is because of the ongoing debate over using processes by celebrities in Indian society. When the couple cannot conceive or whole-hog their family, surrogacy is the last choice that stays with them. It is far better for those couples who cannot have their baby or cannot become parents by natural process due to sexual intercourse. This is one of the reasons why surrogacy rules in India have become a concern.

What is the meaning of surrogacy?

Surrogacy meaning

In Latin, “Surrogatus” means a substitute, i.e., a person appointed to act in the place of another person. Surrogacy means carrying and delivering a child to another person. It is the practice where a woman bears a child with a known or unknown couple who cannot produce children in the usual way. It is a process where a woman carries a child for another with the intention to give the newborn to the intending parents, after the birth.

Surrogacy and its regulations

These are the unions of science, society, and persons who want to turn things into reality. It is a process or win-win situation where the infertile couple and the surrogate mother receive a reward, either in the form of a child or money. Here, the infertile couple can fulfill their most important desire, and the surrogate mother receives the amount she wants or wishes for.

Is it legal to have commercial surrogacy in India?

India allows only one type of surrogacy as a legal operation and that is altruistic surrogacy. Also, commercial surrogacy is banned in India with respect to The Surrogacy (Regulation) Act 2021. Moreover, there are different forms of surrogacy:-

  1. Altruistic Surrogacy
  2. Traditional surrogacy
  3. Gestational Surrogacy
  4. Independent Surrogacy
  5. Commercial Surrogacy

Altruistic Surrogacy

This is one of the legal surrogacy type allowed in India. Here, the intending parents do not or cannot help the surrogate mother with any monetary fund for the risks, efforts and time. The surrogate mother can only be any relative or any close one.

Traditional surrogacy

This is also known as straight surrogacy. It begins with artificial or natural insemination until the intended couple receives their healthy and fully developed baby. The conevtional use of surrogacy in this form is illegal in India.

Gestational Surrogacy

This, also known as host surrogacy, was first invented or practiced in 1986. Here, the process begins with the generation of the embryo with the help of IVF (in In-Vitro Fertilization). The use of gastational carrier came here when there is the need to tranfer the embryo in her womb.

Independent Surrogacy

This is meant for a woman who intends to offer surrogacy services without seeking the help of a surrogacy service provider. It is therefore one of the riskiest operations due to the lack of screenings for protection.

Commercial Surrogacy

When a surrogate mother intends to give her services only for the purpose of monetary fund, it is known as commercial surrogacy. Here the medical expenditure reimbursement is more important for the surrogate mother.

In short, in India, it is not legal to go with surrogacy and have a child in return for some monetary funds, but if a couple is suffering from some medical issues & they intend to have a baby, in that situation they can take permission from the court.

Why is surrogacy always a hotly descriptive topic for Indians?

Surrogacy is a neurotic subject, especially in developing countries like India. There have been many practices, social means, legal and laws, moral concerns, which come into practice when an infertile couple takes advantage of surrogacy in India. The status of the legalities of surrogacy differs from nation to nation. In India, the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) handles the regulation of the surrogacy in India. Many surrogate mothers and intended couples or infertile parents often face gaps because of the legalization since they cannot take advantage of rights authored by the courts.

What does Indian law say about surrogacy and its legalities?

 If you wonder, Is Surrogacy Legal In India? You may not be fully aware of the rules, regulations & protocols attempted by the Indian courts. Although surrogacy is completely legal in India, nothing comes with buts, if, don’t, and other probabilities.

The Indian government has authored many legalities concerning making surrogacy a legal practice. Here, we have given a few laws that may help you define the surrogacy and its legalities in India –

The Indian Council of Medical Research Guidelines, 2005

The guidelines under The Indian Council of Medical Research Guidelines, 2005, were proposed to regulate the conduct of the Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART) clinics serving the facilities of surrogacy treatment in India. These guidelines help an infertile parent/couple to seek fertility facilities through ART operations or treatments. 

The surrogacy bill 2019

The Surrogacy (Regulation) Bill 2019 was introduced by the Health & Family Welfare Minister, Dr. Harsh Vardhan, on 15th July 2019. The bill defines surrogacy as a legal practice where a woman gives birth to a child and, after the birth, gives the child to the intended couple (with the intention over the child legally to them).

What does the surrogacy bill 2019 enact regarding the regulations of surrogacy practices? 

Regulation of surrogacy

The Surrogacy (Regulation) Bill 2019 doesn’t allow the legal practices of commercial surrogacy but gives its full consent to altruistic surrogacy. Altruistic surrogacy is the practice where the intending parents gives no monetary fund except the compensation to the surrogate mother in the form of medical expenses and insurance coverage during the pregnancy.

Purposes for which the surrogacy is permitted or allowed

Surrogacy is allowed when it is: (i) proven that the couple is infertile medically and cannot give birth to a child through natural means; (ii) altruistic; (iii) not for commercial purposes; (iv) doesn’t allow the intending parent or surrogate parent to give birth to a child for any sales purpose, prostitution, or any other form, of exploitation; and (v) the law is available for those intending parents or couple living in marriage if they are suffereing due to illness.

Eligibility criteria (for an infertile or intending couple)

The intending couple who will have surrogacy facilities should have the ‘certificate of essentiality’ and a ‘certificate of eligibility’ issued by the government of India.

What if the surrogate or the gestational carrier doesn’t want to continue the pregnancy? 

A child born through surrogacy is legally the child of the intending couple by all legal means. If there comes the need for abortion (in some cases of the medical situation), surrogacy in India allows the surrogate mother to give the consent in the written form and submit the same to the legal authorities. The authorization must comply with the Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act 1971, and the surrogate mother can withdraw the pregnancy before the procedure of implantation of embryo takes place.

Conclusion

Now, you must be aware and get to know the answer- Is Surrogacy Legal In India?

India has now become the kind of country where lot of celebrities intends to have a baby through ART procedures or surrogacy means. This is because of the legal rights and also because of the present situation in youngsters or today’s generation regarding the birthing styles. Suppose you or anyone you intend to become parents through surrogacy. In that case, you don’t need to have any advertising surrogacy, commercial surrogacy, or exploitation of the mother through any means, or selling of embryos, gametes, or the child after the birth. This is because there is a penalty for offenses of up to 10 lakhs and ten years imprisonment. What you need to do is simply look for the service providers who deal in the similar situations.

If you want to avail of surrogacy services in India and are trying to figure out where to go or how to proceed, get immediate help through professionals by giving a request or missed call at +91 8448879134. Else, you can also raise a request at vinsfertility.

References

  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4345743/
  2. https://blog.ipleaders.in/is-surrogacy-legal-in-india/#:~:text=Commercial%20surrogacy%20is%20prohibited%20in,with%20the%20laws%20of%20India.
  3. https://prsindia.org/billtrack/the-surrogacy-regulation-bill-2019
  4. https://fertilityworld.in/blog/is-surrogacy-legal-in-india-how-is-surrogacy-done-in-india/
  5. https://www.selectivf.com/surrogacy-law-india/
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