Indian hotel chain offers to pay for fertility treatment


Taj Mahal Palace hotel in Mumbai, India.


Taj Mahal Palace hotel in Mumbai is the firm’s oldest hotel

India’s biggest hotel chain, Taj Hotels, has announced plans to help female staff by paying for fertility treatment.

The company said it would reimburse “expenses for family expansion” as part of its commitment to promote equal opportunities for women.

It already has paid maternity leave and creche facilities in all its hotels.

The firm is seeking to break “gender stereotypes” that force many women to stop work when they have children.

Taj Hotels said it would pay for “various medical procedures”, including IVF treatments and the freezing of eggs, embryos and sperm, as well as artificial insemination.

At the same time, the company said it was setting up a new incentive programme to give women a better chance of being promoted.

Dr PV Murthy, global head of human resources at the hotel chain’s parent firm, the Indian Hotels Company Limited (IHCL), said: “We have been consistent in championing the cause for women.

“The extension of medical benefits and the women referral programme is in line with our commitment to encourage women for diverse roles in the company.”

IHCL runs 144 hotels in 11 countries. Its first hotel, the Taj Mahal Palace in Mumbai, opened in 1903.