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Centre allows 6 months maternity leave for surrogacy, amends rules for govt employees

The Central Government has amended the Central Civil Services (Leave) Rules, 1972, to grant 180 days of maternity leave to women government employees opting for surrogacy. Additionally, "commissioning fathers" are entitled to 15 days of paternity leave.

Edited By: Nitin Kumar @Niitz1 New Delhi Updated on: June 24, 2024 14:40 IST
maternity leave
Image Source : PEXELS A representational picture of a pregnant woman's belly

The Central Government has amended its rules to grant 180 days of maternity leave to women government employees who have children through surrogacy. This move marks a significant revision to a 50-year-old regulation that previously did not address maternity benefits for surrogacy cases. According to the amended Central Civil Services (Leave) Rules, 1972, "In case of surrogacy, the surrogate, as well as the commissioning mother with less than two surviving children, may be granted maternity leave of 180 days, in case either or both of them are government servants." This change ensures that women who opt for surrogacy can avail themselves of the same maternity benefits as those who give birth naturally.

Paternity leave and child care provisions

The amendments also introduce provisions for "commissioning father," allowing him 15 days of paternity leave within six months from the child's delivery date. Additionally, the "commissioning mother" can now avail childcare leave under the new rules.

Clarifications and definitions

The Personnel Ministry clarified that the "surrogate mother" refers to the woman who carries the child on behalf of the commissioning mother. Similarly, the "commissioning father" is defined as the intending father of the child born through surrogacy.

Enhanced child care leave

Under the existing rules, both female and single male government servants can take childcare leave for up to 730 days during their entire service tenure. This leave can be used to care for their two eldest surviving children, covering various needs such as education and sickness.

Implementation and impact

The amendments, notified on June 18 under the Central Civil Services (Leave) (Amendment) Rules, 2024, aim to provide equitable benefits to government employees opting for surrogacy. This move is expected to support family planning choices and provide necessary support to employees during significant life events.

As the new rules come into effect, they underscore the government's commitment to modernise policies that cater to diverse family structures and ensure gender equality in workplace benefits. The amendments are poised to benefit a significant number of government employees, particularly women and commissioning parents, across various departments and offices nationwide.

Also read | PM Modi on Parliament Session: 'In our third term, we would work three times harder, expect Oppn's support'

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