India-born surrogate baby arrives to unite with Japanese dad
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Last Updated: Monday, November 03, 2008, 00:00
Osaka, Nov 03: Manji Yamada, the baby born in India to a surrogate mother under contract to a Japanese man has arrived in Osaka to unite with her father, ending months of uncertainty over the infant's fate.

The three-month-old baby had been unable to leave India after birth because she holds neither Indian nor Japanese nationality. The issue was resolved recently after the Japanese government issued a one-year visa to her on humanitarian grounds.

The girl, who was born in late July, arrived at Kansai International Airport in Osaka Prefecture from India yesterday, accompanied by her 70-year-old grandmother Emkio Yamada.

The Japanese government issued the visa last week after the Indian government granted the baby a travel certificate in September in line with a Supreme Court direction.

The Japanese man, 45-year-old father Ikufumi Yamada, has not clarified what happens next.

According to Japanese authorities, it is possible for the baby to become a naturalised Japanese citizen once a parent-child relationship has been established, either by the man recognising his paternity or through his adopting her, Kyodo news agency said.

Manji was born to a surrogate mother at Anand in Gujarat on July 25 and was brought to a hospital in Jaipur on Aug 3.

However, before the baby was born, the Yamadas separated, with the wife not ready to accept the child. The surrogate mother too abandoned Manji and in the absence of clear laws on surrogacy, the child's fate hung in the balance.

The case, which hogged headlines, has brought calls for regulation of the India's booming surrogacy business.

Moved by Manji's plight, a young film-maker Kanupriuya Vijayvargiya announced that she was planning to make an animation movie on her life to focus on the laws related to surrogacy and child rights.

Bureau Report

First Published: Monday, November 03, 2008, 00:00

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