Mumbai: HC asks couple to appear before National Board

The HC also asked the Board to decide on their plea for transfer of embryos within two months.

Urvi MahajaniUpdated: Thursday, July 14, 2022, 09:45 AM IST
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Bombay High Court | File

In a first of its kind case, the Bombay High Court has directed the National Board – constituted under the new Assisted Reproductive Technology Act (ART) and Surrogacy Act – to give a hearing to a couple seeking to complete their surrogacy procedure. A division bench of Justices SV Gangapurwala and SM Modak on Wednesday asked the petitioners to appear before the National Board on August 1 for a hearing.

The HC also asked the Board to decide on their plea for transfer of embryos within two months. The HC was hearing a petition by a couple seeking permission to complete their surrogacy procedure which they had begun before the new Act came into effect.

They have sought transfer of their cryo-preserved embryos from a private hospital to any other fertility clinic. During the hearing on Wednesday, Rui Rodrigues, counsel for the Ministry for Health and Family Welfare informed the court that the National Board has been constituted by the Central Government on May 4 this year under the provisions of the Act.

Rodrigues said that this would be first case of its kind to be decided by the National Board. The couple’s advocates –PV Dinosh and Prashant Phophale – had earlier argued that the transfer of embryos from one clinic to another wouldn’t affect the interest of anyone. However, the private hospital’s advocates – Anita Castellino and Bruno Castellino – had opposed the request contending that it should not be allowed in view of the provisions of the ART Act.

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