Twins head for Germany, apex court seeks law on surrogacy (Lead)

May 26th, 2010 - 7:36 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, May 26 (IANS) As the last hurdle was cleared Wednesday in the travel of surrogate twins to Germany with their natural father Jan Balaz, the Supreme Court said the central government should enact a legislation to take care of surrogacy and related issues.
A vacation bench headed by Justices G.S. Singhvi and C.K. Prasad said that no surrogate child should undergo the difficulties faced by Nicolas and Leonard.

Justice Singhvi said: “We can only wish good luck to them.”

The travel was cleared after Solicitor General Gopal Subramaniam informed the court that the ministry of external affairs had already issued the “exit permit” for the twins, born in 2008 to a Gujarati surrogate mother from Anand.

The twins have been in India since their birth due to immigration problems.

Solicitor General Subramaniam told the Court that even before it (the court) expressed its concern over the absence of statutory backing to surrogacy, he had impressed upon the government to enact such a law. The court which would go into the legal dimensions of the case then adjourned it till October 2010.

However, the surrogate twins have to cross yet another obstacle of acquiring German citizenship. Jan Balaz would move the German Court for acquiring German citizenship for his children. The big hiccup in the final lap is that the German government does not recognize surrogacy as a means of parenthood. Surrogacy is illegal in Germany.

It was on this count alone that the hearing into the matter was prolonged in the apex court because of the apprehension that after leaving India the twins may become stateless.

The case, which took many twists and turns, eventually saw the central government issuing identification papers to the twins and the German government issuing visa.

However, before boarding the plane to Germany which they, according to Jan Balaz, might take tonight itself, the twins needed “exit permit” from the ministry of external affairs.

On this score, the hearing into the matter in the morning was adjourned till 2 p.m. and the solicitor general was asked to state the position of the centre government on the “exit permit”. Soon after the court assembled after lunch break, Subramaniam informed the court that the “exit permit” had already been issued and was with the court registry.

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