On Wednesday, the parliamentary select committee recommended some key changes to the Surrogacy (Regulation) Bill, 2019. According to these changes a “willing woman” and not just “close relative” to become a surrogate mother, only after the gap of five-year wait period before opting for surrogacy, and allowing single women either she should be divorcee or widow in the age group of 35 to 45 year and persons of Indian origin (PIOs) to avail of surrogacy.
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This panel also recommends increasing the insurance cover for surrogate mothers for a period of 1.5 years to 3 years. While endorsing the ban on commercial surrogacy, the panel, led by BJP MP Bhupender Yadav, recommended keeping an option for compensating the surrogate mother beyond insurance coverage and medical expenses. It includes taking care of her nutritional food requirements, maternity wear, etc. These care are important for the well-being and upkeep of the surrogate mother.
The Rajya Sabha select committee that examined the bill argued that restricting the surrogate mother as a “close relative” possibility affects the availability of surrogate mothers. The committee said in its report submitted on Wednesday “A willing woman shall act as a surrogate mother and be permitted to undergo surrogacy procedures as per the provisions of this Act”.
Regarding the requirement of five years as the period of inability to conceive before opting for surrogacy, the committee suggested that there may be certain proven medical conditions like absence of uterus by birth, non-functional uterus, removal of uterus due to cancer, fibroids, etc or patients with chronic medical condition where normal pregnancy is ruled out and it is medically proven beyond any doubt that surrogacy is the only option.
The panel further observed that the requirement of obtaining a certificate of proven infertility is not at all justified in such cases.
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Source: Economic Times
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