Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan introduced the Surrogacy Regulation Bill which was passed by the Lok Sabha yesterday. This move bans commercial surrogacy and seeks to set up a National Surrogacy Board, State Surrogacy Boards and appointment of appropriate authorities to regulate surrogacy.
The bill aims to stop exploitation of women who lend their wombs for surrogacy and also to protect the rights of the children born through this method. The Bill further aims to protect the interests of the couple who opt for this procedure in order to prevent them from being exploited by clinics who are carrying this out as a business. In the bill, surrogacy is defined as a practice where a woman gives birth to a baby for an eligible couple and agrees to hand over the baby to them after it is born. The bill prohibits commercial surrogacy. The only monetary reward to the surrogate mother is the medical expenses and the insurance cover for her.