After a long, really long time, I did a story that made me think and learn.
I knew something like sperm banks exist, somewhere in the world and that men go there to give 'samples' in plastic containers that are coded and tagged and the man goes out with money in his pocket. I'd also heard that to aid ejaculation, the clinic in question supplies donors and depositors with dirty magazines or lets them watch porn and hangs pictures of nude women on the walls.
What I didn't know was that beneath the seeming flippancy of it all, sperm collection and preservation is a tricky business. Dilip Patil is doing it well at Mulund, and he says he gets about 8 to 10 donors every day. That's a big number for any city in India, not just Mumbai. And is the remuneration the only reason? Not so, says Patil. "For a collegian, yes, Rs 500 per sample is good enough to watch a movie and have a pizza. But we have the vice president of a shipping company who is an approved donor with us, and surely the money is not an incentive for him."
Patil says that most come with the idea of helping an unknown couple, somewhere in the city or beyond, conceive using their sperms after hopeful trying and medicine fails. "It gives them a real kick to know that their sample will help somebody have a child," says Patil, adding that he discourages those looking only for money. "If you're not dedicated to donating for a good cause regularly, we don't want you on board," is Patil's reasoning.
8 to 10 every day? That's great. That's very good. Know more here.