Surrogacy in India: A Comprehensive Guide to the Practice
Surrogacy in India is a widely discussed topic in the realm of assisted reproductive technology, offering hope to individuals and couples struggling with infertility. Among the countries that have embraced surrogacy as a viable solution, India has emerged as a popular destination due to its favorable legal framework and affordable options. In this article, we will delve into the concept of surrogacy, highlighting its process, legal aspects, and the reasons why India has become a preferred choice for surrogacy seekers.
Surrogacy is an arrangement in which a woman, known as the surrogate mother, carries and gives birth to a child on behalf of another person or couple, referred to as the intended parents. This process allows individuals or couples facing fertility challenges to experience the joy of parenthood by using the biological material of one or both parents.
Types of Surrogacy
There are two primary types of surrogacy: traditional surrogacy and gestational surrogacy. In traditional surrogacy, the surrogate mother is genetically related to the child as her own eggs are fertilized by the intended father’s sperm. Conversely, gestational surrogacy involves the implantation of an embryo created through in vitro fertilization (IVF), using the eggs and sperm of the intended parents or donors, into the surrogate mother’s uterus.
Surrogacy in India
India has gained prominence in the surrogacy arena for several reasons. Firstly, the legal framework in India permits surrogacy, making it accessible to both domestic and international couples. Furthermore, the cost of surrogacy in India is comparatively lower than in many other countries, making it an affordable option for individuals seeking surrogacy services.
Process of Surrogacy in India
The surrogacy process in India generally involves the following steps:
Initial Consultation: Intended parents consult with a surrogacy agency or fertility clinic to understand the process, legal aspects, and associated costs.
Surrogate Selection: The agency or clinic assists in selecting a suitable surrogate based on medical and psychological evaluations.
Legal Procedures: Contracts are drawn up between the intended parents and the surrogate, outlining the rights and responsibilities of each party.
IVF and Embryo Transfer: The intended mother’s eggs (or donor eggs) and the intended father’s sperm (or donor sperm) are fertilised through IVF. Once the embryos are developed, they are transferred to the surrogate mother’s uterus.
Prenatal Care and Birth: The surrogate receives regular prenatal care and medical support throughout the pregnancy. After the birth, the intended parents assume legal custody of the child.
Legal Framework in India
The surrogacy laws in India underwent significant revisions in 2015 and 2018. Presently, surrogacy is allowed only for Indian couples who have been married for at least five years and face medical infertility issues. Commercial surrogacy is prohibited, and surrogacy can only be altruistic, meaning the surrogate cannot receive any financial compensation beyond medical and pregnancy-related expenses.
Surrogacy in India offers a glimmer of hope to individuals and couples yearning to experience the joys of parenthood. With its favorable legal framework and cost-effective options, India has become a preferred destination for those seeking surrogacy services. However, it is crucial to thoroughly research and consult with experienced professionals to ensure a smooth and ethical surrogacy journey.