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The bill passed by the government in Lok Sabha to ban commercial surrogacy is welcome Having a meaningful discussion for almost an hour even amid...

The bill passed by the government in Lok Sabha to ban commercial surrogacy is welcome. Having a meaningful discussion for almost an hour even amid commotion caused by some parties over other issues in the Lok Sabha is laudable. There have been several instances in the past, where the poor women were exploited in the name of surrogacy and over a period of time, Indian has become the hub of commercial surrogacy.

Allowing only close relatives to be surrogate mothers and penalising the fraudsters with a 10-year jail term and fine up to Rs. 10 lakh would definitely reduce the exploitation. However, the bill has not clearly mentioned about three aspects, such as the clear definition of close relatives, the timeline for issuance of the certificate by the National or State Surrogacy Board and where to appeal if the applicants do not receive the certificate even though they are eligible. So, there should be a proper discussion in the upper house to make the bill free of loopholes before proceeding further.

- Mejari Mallikarjuna, Chittoor

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