Wombs For Rent,The Booming Business of Surrogate Mothers


Surrogacy in India is booming, thanks to the low cost of the procedure, availability of surrogates in the world’s second most populous country and the fact that India is one of the few countries in the world that allows commercial surrogacy.
Madhu Makwan an Indian woman asks a reporter to translate a card in English she received from a Canadian family for whom the Indian labourer spent nine months gestating their son for them.
The letter reads in part: “Without your help and sacrifice, we would not be able to have our family. Please know we will tell him about you and how special you are to us. We will never forget you, you will always be in our hearts.” Makwan delivered the boy two weeks ago. “Of course I feel bad — I kept the child in my womb for nine months,” she said. “But she needs a child; I need money.”
In one hostel in Anand — a small city known as the “milk capital” of India in the far western state of Gujarat — there are 50 surrogate mothers living together, each who will earnaround U.S.$8,000 for carrying a baby.”It’s a lot of money,” said a woman who identifies herself as Manjula. “For people like us who have never seen money, it’s a lot of money.”
This is the second time Manjula — a 30-year-old who has a son and two daughters of her own –has carried a child for profit. Before surrogacy,she and her husband used to earn less than $2 a day working in the fields. “The first time I came, I made a house,” she said. “Now I have come for my daughter. I have to educate her, I have to get her married.”
“I want to teach my daughters computers; I
have to educate them — get (them) married to a nice boy,” she added.
Surrogate mother Madhu Makwan says the
service has completely changed the fortunes for herself and her family. Asked what she would say to the Canadian parents who rented her womb: “I’d say thank you. I don’t know how to say anything else in English! “I’ve got a chance now to make my life,” said Makwan, wiping tears from her eyes. “God has been kind.”

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