The advertisement was seeking a woman with a “high intelligence quotient, fair or wheatish complexion, between 22-26 yrs. Preferably B +ve”.
It might have added convent-educated, very good-natured and specified a caste. But this was no matrimonial notice. Placed by an organisation called Surrogacy India, it was looking for egg donors who would meet that description. It went on said egg donors would be “duly rewarded”.
The prejudices that prevail in practices such as marriage seem to have been transferred to the process of birth itself, with people openly asking for traits that they think will produce the kind of babies they want. It’s a kind of a Shaadi.com for embryos.
Except that it’s more complicated than that. The practice of egg donation, especially when done commercially, has thrown up a range of tricky ethical questions over the years. India, which has seen an assisted reproduction boom in recent years, was blissfully oblivious to these questions. These procedures were lucrative businesses with no regulations or standards. But with drafting of the Assisted Reproductive Technologies (Regulation) Bill, 2013, the conversation has begun to change.
The regulation must, of course, cover questions of consent from the egg donors, their reproductive rights and the safety of such procedures. Only last year, a young woman in Delhi died after donating eggs. But as it decides on the business of birth, India will also have to deal with questions of commodification and choice that the West has long grappled with.
The GLP aggregated and excerpted this blog/article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion and analysis. Read full, original post: Price and prejudice: How ads for egg donation are starting to sound like matrimonials