In a panel discussion organised on the proposed Surrogacy Bill, the participating panellists unanimously opined that motherhood is a privileged right of every woman and it is unethical to ban commercial surrogacy. The panel discussion was organised by Origin Foundation at Mumbai Marathi Patrakar Sangh.
The panellists were Dr Snehalata Deshmukh (Former Vice-Chancellor, Mumbai University), Kumar Ketkar (Senior Journalist), Jayshree Khadilkar (Editor- Daily Navakal) and Sudesh Hinglaspurkar (Trustee, Granthali Publication).
They said commercial surrogacy should continue, but in a standardised manner as it is a complex matter, efforts must be made to help the government in making new law.
Infertility specialist Dr Sandeep Mane said, “I reject terms like ‘rent a womb’, ‘baby farms’ and ‘baby factory’. I reject an insult on motherhood, be it even in the form of commercial surrogacy. They are not renting their wombs, they are donating motherhood. They are donating lives and are helping in continuing legacy of a couple.”
Dr Mane also recently released his book, ‘Surrogacy Dreams Come True’, which talks about honouring motherhood in every form.
“It talks about the couples who undertake surrogacy after failed attempts to conceive deserve the highest respect for being together in their fight,” said Dr Mane.
As the panellists were discussing, Dr Deshmukh advised to form an expert committee to review the new Bill. Following which, the government can be given recommendations and suggestions before making it a law.
The new surrogacy Bill proposes that a woman should take help of her blood relations for surrogacy. However, panellists argued that this may lead to complications as the child will face the birth mother and not the genetic mother, if they are living in the same house.
Dr Mane will be sending a copy of his book to the Parliamentary standing committee on Surrogacy Bill and appeals to people to send their suggestions and ideas on the new surrogacy Bill on firstname.lastname@example.org.
“It is our responsibility to make sure that the law is made correctly, so that future generations do not suffer,” said Dr Mane.