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Right to Conceive a child and ART Bill 2020

Introduction:

The Assisted Reproductive Technology (Regulation) Bill was introduced into the Lok Sabha in September 2020 and provided for the regulation of the services related to it. Surrogacy is not a new topic for India. It has been in India since the mythological era.

The Black Law Dictionary defines surrogacy as ‘the process of carrying someone else’s child and delivering it for someone other’. In simple terms, it is the act of producing a child from another individual.

What is ART Bill?

The Assisted Reproductive Technology Bill seeks to introduce all new and advanced techniques to make a woman pregnant who cannot reproduce naturally. It basically involves gamete donation, RightIn-Vitro Fertilization etc. These techniques can be provided in an ART Clinic that offers proper treatments and supply gametes. 

The Bill provides that every ART Clinic must be registered under the National Registry of Banks and Clinics of India, which will act as a central database. The State Government will be appointed to help with the registration procedures.

There are certain procedures that need to be followed; like standard procedures and physical manpower with proper medical facilities. Once, the registration is done, it will last for the next 5 years and can be renewed after the expiry of 5 years.

The Necessity of the Bill:

The Bill intends to protect the women from exploitation and supports the donor with many insurance covers, and protects the children born through the ART Bill. It also helps to preserve the sperms and embryos and intends to make the genetic implantation.

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It takes into consideration the pre-testing to exert any genetic disease beforehand. However, the process will only commence with written formal consent from the donor and the done.

Rights of a child born through ART:

A child born out of Assisted Reproductive technology will be considered as the biological child of the couple who has asked for the process.

The rights and privileges of a natural child will be given to the child born out of this process and the donor will have no rights over the same once it takes birth. 

Offences and Penalties:

The Bill excludes:

  • Any abandoning or exploiting of a child through the process of ART
  • Selling, purchasing, or trading a child for money
  • Using females to produce a child through ART as donors without their consent
  • Transferring human embryo or sperm into a male or female animal

Any offences committed as the above-mentioned will be punishable with a fine of five and ten lakh rupees for a first contravention. If there is subsequent contravention, then the offence will be punishable with imprisonment for a term of 8-12 years and a fine of 10-12 lakh.

Any clinic doing these kinds of crimes for the sake of money will be punishable for imprisonment between 5-10 years and a fine of 10-20 lakhs or both.

Conclusion:

The basic idea is that Ethics committees are required in clinics, and compulsory counselling services should be separate from them.

Earlier versions of the Bill restrict embryonic stem cell research, which must be reinstated, and the definitions of commissioning couple, infertility, ART clinics, and banks must be synchronized between the Bill and the Surrogacy Bill. 

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