Union Government allowed the import of frozen human embryos for artificial reproduction on 15 January 2014. The decision allowed foreign couples to bring in frozen human embryos and rent a surrogate womb in India for the baby to be born.
The relaxed rules will also apply to other infertility related treatment such as in-vitro fertilization (IVF).
On the one hand, the decision will give boost to the infertility treatment and on the other it will open a huge segment of the medical tourism market.
The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) will give a No Objection Certificate (NOC) to ensure the quality control of imports. There is no restriction on implantation of imported frozen embryo in a surrogate either but the conditions for granting of NOC are stringent.
The documents required for an NOC include a certification of registration of the ART clinic. The ART Clinic will recommend the transfer of embryos or gametes and clinic in India with name and address of its in-charge where the treatment will happen.
The foreign clinic has to certify the woman that she cannot conceive or that such conception may lead to undesirable medical implications. There should be certification that at least one of the gametes was from the infertile couple.
The ART clinic has to certify that foreign clinic details of the couple like from which country, name and address of the couple. The foreign’s counterpart has to certify that the embryo was generated in their clinic and there was no sex selection. The couple has to furnish identification documents and proof of marriage.