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India-born surrogate baby arrives to unite with Japanese dad

Last Updated: Monday, November 3, 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

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 3, 2008 - 00:00

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