“Boon for Paid Mothers” or “Human Rights Violations”? An Exploratory Study on Commercial Surrogacy in India

Ritika Mukherjee, International Institute for Population Sciences (IIPS)

Increasing incidence of infertility coupled with the desire to be parent of one’s own biological child, the surrogacy industry has become billion dollar global business in India. Lack of proper laws and regulations, advanced medical infrastructure and less expensive arrangement has made India the most favourable destination for having surrogate babies. Young, married, illiterate and unemployed women belonging to low socioeconomic status are recruited to be surrogate mothers with an average remuneration of 3500 USD and their families encourage them solely for the want of money. These women with an incomplete knowledge about the process are naturally diffident to the system and mostly surrender to whatever situations they have to face. While the players in the business are earning quick money and many poor women increasingly looking at commercial surrogacy as means of livelihood, it raises many questions on reproductive health, unethical medical practices and human rights violations of women.

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 Presented in Session P3. Fertility Intentions and Behaviors