Henry Chu | Los Angeles Times | 19 April 2006
ANAND, India — As temp jobs go, Saroj Mehli has landed what she feels is a pretty sweet deal. It’s a nine-month gig, no special skills needed, and the only real labor comes at the end — when she gives birth.
If everything goes according to plan, Mehli, 32, will deliver a healthy baby early next year. But rather than join her other three children, the newborn will be handed over to an American couple who are unable to bear a child on their own and are hiring Mehli to do it for them.
She’ll be paid about $5,000 for acting as a surrogate mother, a bonanza that would take her more than six years to earn on her salary as a schoolteacher in a village near here.
“I might renovate or add to the house, or spend it on my kids’ education or my daughter’s wedding,” Mehli said.