Baby Factory – Boon or bane?

Few years back I had read the article “Rent a womb” (perhaps in “India Today” don’t remember exactly which magazine). I came to know about the word “Surrogacy” for the first time then. After reading that article, I was under impression that it is too complicated a process and won’t get social acceptance (at least in India). But I was proved wrong. Today the service of “renting a womb” has become a full blown business for seller and a matter of convenience or style statement of sort for buyer.

Baby FactoryCurrent edition of “India Today” magazine carries interesting article titled as “Baby Factory” on surrogacy and surrogate mothers. The article talks about “The sat Kaival Hospital & Akanksha Fertility Clinic” located in Anand, Gujarat. As per the article this clinic alone has produced (word “produced” will be bit rude but apt) 500 surrogate babies so far and per month they produce around 30 surrogate babies. After reading the article, I can’t stop thinking like whether surrogacy is boon or bane? Here are my thoughts :

Why Surrogacy is boon?

  1. Worldwide there are many unfortunate couples who because of their physical disabilities are not in position to give birth to their own babies by themselves despite of their reproductive systems being healthy. For such couples there is no alternate except surrogacy to have the baby to whom they can call their own. With advancement of medical science such couples have the option and ray of hope. So surrogacy is boon for them.

Why Surrogacy is bane?

  1. Surrogacy is very complicated process from legal and personal prospective. The lady who rents her womb for surrogacy has to go through a lot (both physically and mentally) throughout the process. Getting the social and family acceptance for renting a womb won’t be an easy thing in Indian cultural context.
  2. Also, in Indian context, lady who will agree to rent her womb will not be doing it mostly by choice but by force. Her circumstances will force her into surrogacy mostly. In most of the cases, it will be amount to exploitation of the woman who is in dire need of money for survival.
  3. The mental stigma associated with keeping baby in womb for nine months and give the baby away the moment he/she born is quiet emotional and mentally draining for any woman. So emotions kill here.
  4. Apart from this the major problem could be if any complications occur during pregnancy or if pregnancy turns out to be lethal for woman/baby or due to any circumstance if new born baby is not healthy then how to handle such situation? Main question is, Is there any law (and most importantly its implementation) in our country to protect the surrogate mother and new born baby?
  5. Is there any way to decide legitimacy of couples who can go for surrogate baby? Is the option of having surrogate baby should be available to all the couples (including same sex couples) as a matter of their personal choice?
  6. Over a period of time what will be the social repercussions of such option being used freely by couples? In today’s world “Outsourcing” is buzz word. People now believe in (or prefer to) outsourcing by spending money rather than “Do it yourself”. In today’s cut throat competitive world where women have lot of aspiration for her career (and also sort of figure conscious) why they will waste 6-12 months of time just on the process of delivering the baby when they can outsource it? Outsourcing the baby production will be done through surrogacy while upbringing of the baby will be outsourced to maids and child care centres.
  7. Also, when baby grows up and find out that his/her parents has outsourced his/her birth just for their own convenience, will it not cause a mental stigma for baby?

So all n all to me, it looks like surrogacy  is more like bane then boon. Advancement in medical science has given this wonderful option to couples but use of this option should be measured and on need basis only rather then using it for convenience.

In India, bollywood bigwigs Aamir Khan and Shahrukh khan have started the trend by choosing the options of having surrogate babies. As far as I understand, in both the cases, it was just convenience rather than any physical disabilities which drove them to opt for surrogate baby. I’m afraid people who follow these khans as their role models will also start choosing surrogacy option as a matter of convenience and style statement.

At last in my personal opinion, I would like to say journey of parenthood is worth enjoying. Treat your babies has human rather than shopping material.

For those interested, full article of India today put up below in form of images :

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Priorities @65

Today is India’s 65th Independence day. Today MMS will hoist the trio from Red fort and lecture the nation on upholding the high standard of integrity, remain patriotic and remain true to the nation. But I will be surprized if his speech will be able to lift the spirit of the nation. Unfortunately, over all दशा & दिशा of the nation is such that it is difficult to remain optimistic about our great nation’s future. Even after 65 years of independence it seems like we have been at the same cross roads from where we had started. Going forward challenges are plenty and we look ill prepared to tackle them. To me following are some of the biggest threats nation is facing as of now and need to fix them ASAP.

1. Menace of Corruption :

Needless to say menace of corruption is eating up the nation as Termite eats the wood. Since last couple of years, it’s been a raining season of corruption scams. Kalmadis, Rajas, Karunandihis and other politicians are setting the new benchmarks of scam figures with each scam. The blood and sweat mixed hard earned money of nation is going to Swiss bank accounts and in the pocket of our thick skinned politicians. The money which should have been used to build the nation is being used for the construction of the plush mansions of our corrupt politicos. Moral values is almost zero in our current lot of politicians. Even if I think hard, I can’t even find one politician who has held the high moral ground and is genuinely interested in serving the nation. Such is the pathetic state of our current politico system. Nation should take the task of cleansing the current political system with utmost priority. Fortunately, I can see the light at the end of tunnel. Anna Hazare has taken up this task for the nation. I hope he and his crusaders with the support of nation will bring much needed change for the nation. So Good luck to Annaji!!

2. Internal & External Security Threats :

Terrorism is another menace which should be dealt with iron hands. But I see least willingness from our current government to fight this menace. Every now and then innocent people loose their lives in terror attacks and government is just good at appraising the resilience of people and throwing the loaf of compensation money in front of victim’s family. Government has failed miserably in protecting the lives of it’s citizen time and again. Time has come for government to realize that it’s enough now….. value the life of citizen. Value of citizen is much more than the 200,000 INR compensation government is giving. Time has come to shed the vote bank politics and to do something concrete to strengthen the internal security and protect the lives of citizen.

From the External security point of view also we have been least fortunate to have neighbours like China and Pakistan. Despite of evident Anti India sentiments of Pak and China, we keep trusting them and keep getting stabbed in our back time and again. We as a growing power house in world, it is time that we become more assertive to safeguard our national interests. Why we need to go crying at the doorsteps of uncle SAM and ask uncle SAM to punish our neighbours for their wrong doings. In my personal opinion peace talks with Pak is not going to result in smoother relations and if we are hopeful about the results of peace talks we should at least be more demanding in talks to safeguard our interests. The aim of the peace talks should be to safeguard our interests rather than reinstating good relationships with neighbours at the cost of lives of innocent people.

3. Lull in the political leadership :

Before 1947, we were ruled by the queen and today also the situation remains the same. No matter how many denials come from MMS he is mere a puppet and front face of queen. Indians should realize that we are democratic nation and not a kingdom which can be ruled by one family generations after generations. And even if we accept the dynastic rulers, it’s bitter fact that dynastic rulers have not done good to the nation. So first priority should be to get rid of dynastic politics and giving chance to able leadership.  Also, siting the reason of compulsions of coalition politics all the wrong doings are just ignored. To counter the problems of coalition politics we need some strong leaders who can make all the parties to toe the line of the government. India need visionary leader who can push the development agenda for the nation and assertive leader who can keep all the coalition partners in check. Also, We definitely need the infusion of young blood into politics to replace our thick skinned aging politicos. (Definitely, our Yuvraj is not going to help in this cause)

4. Reinstate citizens pride in being Indian :

As I mentioned the state in which India right now, it does not look so encouraging. For common man, unprecedented high cost of living  is killing them softly every day. Rich is getting richer and poor is getting poorer. Common man has been so busy in meeting his both ends that he doesn’t have time to think about country. It’s general belief amongst the common man that he is not getting anything from the country. In such a case how common man can feel pride in being citizen of India or why he should think about giving back to the nation? Reigniting the passion for the nation in the hearts of it’s citizen is important. Need is to develop overall cohesive environment for the Citizens in which they feel themselves encouraged to perform their civic duties with honesty and remain more attached to the nation. Patriotism is not the thing which needs to be shown only on 15th August and 26th January. I am not sure about how to get such change on ground but something needs to be done in time.

Above are my priorities for India at 65. Hope some of the things will improve by the time it turns 66.

Despite of all the odds and hardships, India and Indians remains unique and I murmur following song while remembering my heartland.

 

God bless my country….

Jai Hind

 

 

Humanit and War Crimes : Sri Lanka’s Killing Fields

After watching this, Just one thing can be said : Humanity in crisis. Also, it reaffirms how ineffective the UN has been in maintaining peace and respecting civilian human rights world over.

http://www.channel4.com/programmes/sri-lankas-killing-fields/4od#3200170

The empire on which sun never sets

Since 1819, when Raffles founded Singapore as a trading post for the East India Company the white man’s supremacy had been unquestioned. By the time I went to school in 1930, I was aware that the Englishman was the big boss, and those who were white like him were also bosses – some big, others not so big, but all bosses. They had superior lifestyles and lived separately from the Asiatics, as we were then called. They ate superior food with plenty of meat and milk products. Every three years they went “home” to England for three to six months at a time to recuperate from the everything climate of equatorial Singapore. Their children also went “home” to be educated and not to Singapore schools. They, too, led superior lives.

There were no question of any resentment. The superior status of the British in government and society was simply a fact of life. After all, they were the greatest people in the world. They had the biggest empire that history had ever known, stretching over all time zones, across all four oceans and five continents.

I have taken above text from the book “The Singapore Story – Memoirs of Lee Kuan Yew”. Like what we have Gandhiji in India, same is Lee Kuan Yew for Singapore. For information to reader, Singapore in past was also a British colony and in his book he has written about the impression he had about the British empire till he grew up.

In 1941, Japanese invaded the Singapore and managed to win over Singapore. He writes about British empire post Singapore fall to Japanese in his next chapter as below :

In 70 days of surprises, upsets and stupidities, British colonial society was shattered, and with it all the assumptions of the Englishman’s superiority. During the war, it was the white civilian bosses who ducked under the tables when the bombs and shells fell. Hospitals, public utilities and other essential services were left unmanned. The whites in charge had gone. Stories of their scramble to save their skins led the Asiatics to see them as Selfish and Cowardly. The British myth of their inherent superiority had been smashed by one Asiatic race (read Japanese).

Above lines from the book, indeed describes the selfishness of British race which is inherent in them till date.

In past, I was used to listen this line many time “The sun on British Empire shall never set”. I have seen people leaving for UK from India with very strong faith and belief in this line. Following is the map of the British empire taken from the Wiki as on 1919 which truly says about the supremacy British Raj enjoyed in past.

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But today the reality is the glory of British raj is fading away. Tough economic situations, falling markets, spending cuts n what not. It will be interesting to see how the British empire meets the challenges in their own backyard and adapts to the rising Asian powers from Asia and keep the queen’s flag, flagging high in coming time.

It will still be premature to make a statement that Sun on British empire has set because even today in my day to day life, I made to believe that white skin rules but slowly the white skin’s supremacy is coming under question. So which color is going to rule in future? May be “Brown”…….. who knows.  Amen!!

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