Bill to regulate surrogacy, IVR soon in India; foreigners to be barred

The Australian couple's move to abandon one of their twins born via a surrogate mother in India has raised new controversy for Indian surrogacy while exposing the dark side of the booming industry in the country.

By Salome Phelamei | Updated: Oct 18, 2014, 05:57 AM IST

Zee Media Bureau/Salome Phelamei

New Delhi: The Australian couple's move to abandon one of their twins born via a surrogate mother in India has raised new controversy for Indian surrogacy while exposing the dark side of the booming industry in the country.

The case dates back to 2012 although it came to light recently after a report by the Australian Broadcasting Corporation. The report said the couple returned home with the baby girl while her brother was left behind.

In view of the new development in the surrogacy market, the Health Ministry has proposed new moves to regulate surrogacy and in-vitro fertilization (IVF) in India.

The new rules will make couples mandatory to take custody of their child born through surrogacy. The bill also seeks to address issues like how many pregnancies can be allowed for a surrogate mother, the age of the mother and due compensation to be paid to her.

However, the new rules may bar foreigners from having surrogate babies in India. The Bill will also allow single parents to have children through surrogates. The Bill states that health insurance and regular tests will be make mandatory for surrogates.

The proposed Assisted Reproductive Technology (Regulation) Bill is likely to be introduced in the Winter Session of Parliament.

In India, surrogacy has become a booming business, but there is no law to regulate the same. The surrogacy industry has been criticised for operating without a legal framework.