TODAY

TODAY   |  August 09, 2013

Pakistani TV show gives babies away

A TV host is causing a stir by giving away abandoned babies on his Pakistani television program. NBC’s Ian Williams reports.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> game shows are known for extravagant prizes but one popular show in pakistan may have crossed the line by giving away babies . yes, i said babies . here's ian williams .

>> reporter: he's the biggest star on pakistani television . top game show host . everyone is a winner it seems on his ramadan specials.

>> who wants to win a baby.

>> when he gave abandoned babies to childless couples on primetime television outraged critics say he had gone too far in the race for the ramadan ratings.

>> you have washing machines , dvd players and mobile phones and now kids. you know because he in the end is just another product.

>> reporter: so far three babies have been handed over on the show.

>> this isn't a prize. it's not a game show .

>> it's not a prize. it's not a game show . it's a real charity.

>> reporter: social welfare groups say there's another side to the story which is about preventing babies from being simply dumped on garbage heaps like these.

>> reporter: most unwanted babies are girls and only a few survive the dump. including the three his emergency response organization found and provided for the tv show to raise awareness.

>> we are constantly doing this campaign so that people do not kill a baby. this is killing a human. do not kill.

>> reporter: he also finds the parents of the show from among thousands looking to adopt and say they are carefully vetted. parents like these who say their adopted baby is a gift from god. they said they wanted to receive him on live television to help break the taboo that often surrounds adoption in pakistan.

>> on it's face it's bizarre they're giving away babies but if they're saving their lives.

>> and they screen the parents. it's one of those things when you first hear it you think it can't be. but the more you learn about it it makes sense and we have happy families