The state government said last week that it was open to a debate on granting legal protection to surrogate mothers.
The issue came up during a meeting of women representatives with a government-appointed panel, headed by the retired judge Chandrashekhar Dharmadhikari, to recommend measures to revise existing laws and sections related to women, home department officials said.
Twenty women police officials, bureaucrats and legislators participated in the deliberations. “The existing laws do not even have provisions to deal with the issue of surrogacy. This is a new issue, which needs to be addressed. Whether it can be regulated or legal protection be granted to surrogate mothers, is a matter of debate,” an official said.
Women police officials pointed out that incidents of rich foreigners luring poor girls into marriage should be addressed. “The girls’ family later realises the groom is already married,” the official said. Suggestions have been invited from participants within 15 days on how the issue could be addressed.