Commercial Surrogacy Current Affairs - 2020

Union Cabinet approves changes introduced in Surrogacy (Regulation) bill

On February 26, 2020, the Union Cabinet approved the changes introduced to the Surrogacy (Regulation) bill, 2019. The changes were introduced by the 23-member select committee of Rajya Sabha.

Highlights

The changes approved include not only close relatives but “any woman” willing to act as a surrogate mother shall be allowed. It has also approved deleting the definition of infertility. Earlier infertility in the bill was defined as inability to conceive after unprotected intercourse for 5 years. The committee believed that it was too long period for a couple to wait for a child. The Insurance Cover of a surrogate mother is to be increased from 16 months to 36 months.

Background

The Surrogacy (Regulation) bill was passed in Lok Sabha in 2019. The aim of the bill was to prevent commercial surrogacy. It also aims to promote altruistic surrogacy that does not demand monetary compensation apart from medical expenses and insurance.

Assisted Reproductive Technology Bill approved by Union Cabinet

On February 18, 2020, the Union Cabinet approved the Assisted Reproductive Technology (Regulation) bill. The bill proposes to establish a national registry.

Highlights

The bill aims at setting up of a national board and as state board to implement a legal framework. The bill also proposes to establish a central data base of banks and clinics all over the country. It will help in identifying people that are involved in illegal embryo sale and trafficking.

Assisted Reproductive Technologies (ART)

The ART is used to treat infertility. The technology works to remove an egg from a woman’s body and fertilize it with a man’s sperm to make an embryo.

Need

India has become a surrogacy hub for foreign couples. Also, there are unethical practices that need to be brought under legislation. The 228th report of LCI (Law Commission of India) recommended for suitable legislation towards the ART practices being followed in the country.