An investigation team set up by the Tamil Nadu government has declared that actor Nayanthara and her filmmaker husband Vignesh Shivan have not violated any surrogacy laws. The couple welcomed twins, Uyir and Ulagham, via surrogacy earlier this month, which was followed by much controversy. The legality of the process was questioned, due to the fact that commercial surrogacy is not allowed in India. Nevertheless, the team cleared Nayanthara and Vignesh from all charges.
The panel had been set up by the Health and Family Welfare Department to investigate if there were any discrepancies in the process. The panel submitted its findings on Wednesday, saying that the couple is innocent. In turn, the report blames the hospital.
“On investigating the doctor who provided treatment to the couple, it was discovered that the couple’s family doctor had provided a letter of recommendation in 2020 based on which treatment was provided,” the panel said, according to a report in The News Minute. The team mentioned that they have not been able to speak to the family doctor so far as they do not reside in India. The report also said that the surrogate mother had signed the agreement with the couple in November 2021 and the embryo was placed in her in March this year.
The twins were born in October. Commercial surrogacy was banned in India after the The Surrogacy (Regulation) Act 2021 was passed in December, and came into effect in January 2022. When Vignesh and Nayanthara began the process, it was still legal. The report said that the hospital’s inadequate method of record-keeping had led to the controversy.
Earlier, during the proceedings, Nayanthara had said that the surrogate is her relative, and her marriage with Vignesh Shivan had been registered six years ago. According to the Assisted Reproductive Technology (Regulation) act and the Surrogacy (Regulation) act enacted in 2021, the couple is deemed eligible for surrogacy only if they have been married for five years. The law also stated that the surrogate mother has to be a close relative of the couple, a married woman with a child of her own, aged between 25 and 35 years, who has been a surrogate only once in her life. The surrogate is based in the UAE.
Nayanthara and Vignesh welcomed the twins Uyir and Ulagam on October 9.