Where do you really stand on surrogacy?

Hindustan Times | By
Jan 22, 2018 03:54 PM IST

A new book takes you on a journey through the process that will likely make you rethink your views on the unregulated practice.

Transnational Commercial Surrogacy and the (Un) Making of Kin in India

Anindita Majumdar

Oxford University Press

Cost: 850

The demand for surrogacy in India was so high that it made way for professional surrogacy agencies to enter the market as foreigners thronged accommodating IVF clinics, wanting a child. The market came under severe criticism for exploiting the surrogates, among other things.

Anindita Majumdar’s Transnational Commercial Surrogacy and the (Un) Making of Kin in India takes on this controversial subject via case studies, introducing readers to various stakeholders in the business that she has interacted with, without identifying them.

We're now on WhatsApp. Click to join.

Reading the book will make you feel part of the process of childbirth through surrogacy, and it can be an uncomfortable journey. As you explore the dynamics of IVF and surrogacy in India, you realise why the long-pending Assisted Reproductive Technologies (ART) Bill is vital, and begin to understand what it is still missing.

“The draft law on technology regulates bodies, relationships, and eligibility rather than the use of the technology. This is telling because it points towards the ways in which commercial surrogacy poses foundational questions about how we think and assume kinship to be what it is… Commercial surrogacy disrupts the taken-for-granted nature of our intimate relationships, through technological interventions… in India the transnational nature of the commercial gestational surrogacy arrangement has disrupted many ideas of being and belonging,” the book states.

In it, you also meet characters like Rukhsana, who is a surrogate. “While one [livelihood] is disreputable the other is respectable — at least in comparison. And this is what draws her in: the sui (needle) that will induce a pregnancy without having to sleep with anyone or indulge in prostitution. Instead, Rukhsana underwent injections, transvaginal probes, and finally the birth of a baby to be able to earn the amount of money she had only heard of,” Majumdar states.

Such examples bring to life the many sides to a complex argument, in a way that remains engaging and yet informative. You will turn the last page knowing more than you did before you set out on this journey, and isn’t that what all reading is about?

"Exciting news! Hindustan Times is now on WhatsApp Channels Subscribe today by clicking the link and stay updated with the latest news!" Click here!

    Rhythma Kaul works as an assistant editor at Hindustan Times. She covers health and related topics, including ministry of health and family welfare, government of India.

Story Saved
Live Score
Saved Articles
My Reads
Sign out
New Delhi 0C
Wednesday, November 15, 2023
Start 14 Days Free Trial Subscribe Now
Register Free and get Exciting Deals