A leading US based daily newspaper Wall Street Journal has interviewed Dr. Rita Bakshi, senior IVF specialist and founder of the International Fertility Centre about the recent move by Centre to ban foreigners to use local surrogate mothers to bear children in the country.
Dr. Rita Bakshi, whose clinic is based in New Delhi, said that around 20 couples had contacted her “very worried” about the government’s stance. “I am assuring them, only [based on] history, with cases already going on, you can’t put a stop to it like that,” Dr. Bakshi told Wall Street Journal Correspondent Joanna Sugden
India has become a popular destination for people looking to have children using surrogate mothers, in part because the costs, about $15,000, are relatively low. That compares with about $200,000 in the U.S.
“All parents who can’t afford U.S. and U.K. [surrogacy prices] are now going to suffer,” Dr. Bakshi said.
In a letter, the Indian Council of Medical Research, directed fertility clinics not to allow surrogacy services to foreign couples but can be used only to married Indian couples.
Laws on surrogacy differ around the world. In some places, it is prohibited while in Ukarine and other countries the surrogacy services are allowed to take place. In the U.S., a law on surrogacy also varies from state to state.
India has increasingly restricted surrogacy. In 2012, the Home Ministry barred gay couples and single people from using Indian surrogates to have children, saying that only heterosexual couples married for more than two years would be given the visas required to do so.
The existing rules were allowed only for heterosexual couples. Foreign couples seeking to enter into a surrogacy arrangement in India must be a “man and woman [who] are duly married and the marriage should be sustained at least two years”.
“Should the government distinguish between Indians and foreigners who want to have a child via surrogacy?,” Indian Express editorial on latest directive questioned.
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