Child Adoption in India

Child Adoption in India

Adoption means the process through which the adopted child becomes the lawful child of his adoptive parents with all the rights, privileges and responsibilities that are attached to a biological child.

Adoption Statistics

1. About 411 agencies are registered under child adoption service.

2. Maharashtra tops in adopting the number of girl children.

3. Between 2010 and 2017, adoptions have gone down drastically.

4. Even adoptions from outside fell from 628 in 2010 to 578 currently.

5. The disabled children are basically ignored and not adopted.

6. While 5,693 children were adopted within India in 2010, the 2016-17 figures were only 3,210.

Laws, Legislations and Authorities

Central Adoption Resource Authority

1. CARA is the nodal agency which deals with inter and intra country adoption.

2. CARA comes under the Ministry of Women and Child Welfare

3. It is in accordance with the provisions of the Hague Convention on Inter-country Adoption, 1993, ratified by Government of India in 2003.

Hindu Adoption and Maintenance Act, 1956

1. No two children of the same sex can be adopted.

Guardians and Wards Act, 1890

1. NRIs, foreign nationals, Muslims, Parsis, Christians, Jews, and Indian nationals are subjected to this act.

2. If the parent of the child is an adoptive parent, then the parent can be a legal guardian only until the age of 18 years.

Guidelines Governing Adoption of Children, 2015

1. Child adoption resource information guidance (CARING) was made operation where all the Intel one needs for adoption a child is available.

2. The prospective adoptive parents can also track the status of their application.

3. A separate timeline for domestic and foreign adoption is also enabled under this system.

Procedure and Reasons

1. The child’s best interests are of paramount consideration

2. Prospective adoptive parents have to go to civil or family courts to get the final go ahead after completing all other formalities related to adoption.

3. It is even difficult to get a date of hearing in India.

4. The district magistrate needs to pass the adoption order.

5. The adoption cases should be disposed off within 2 months, but that rarely happens in letter and spirit.

6. The cases are pending for years to complete the process of adoption and hence the adoption rate is low in India.

7. There are civil courts, family courts and district courts dealing with the same hence there is a conflict.

8. Basically, children below the age of 2 years are preferred to be adopted.

9. Ideally the Indian citizens are preferred and that too preferably with the socio-cultural background of the child.

10. The parent’s age, financial stability and special needs of the child is taken into consideration.

11. Parents should also be free from life threatening health conditions.

12. While singles less than 55 years of age too are eligible for adopting, a single male cannot adopt a girl child.

13. A couple must be married at least two years and their cumulative age at the time of adoption cannot exceed 110 years.

14. The minimum age difference between the child and either adoptive parent should not be less than 25 years.

Merits

1. The children get a proper family atmosphere to grow up to be healthy individuals psychologically.

2. The children are also benefited and saved from being malnutrition and poverty. Children who are adopted at young ages can even gain enough to overcome any nutritional disadvantages they may have suffered in the womb.

3. The parents, who are unable to conceive, are also benefited emotionally and psychologically with the love and affection of child.

Demerits

1. The children might not be able to adapt well in the household if they are grown up or above 3-4 years.

2. It is emotionally wrenching to the child always if he/she is aware that they are not the biological children of the couple.

3. Single parents, live in relationship couples etc, it is difficult for them to adopt children in India.

4. The parents might have a differentiation in mind between the biological child and adopted child.

5. Lot of legal hassles can be faced when it comes to adopting heritage, property and being heir.

6. Many children go missing and trafficked too in this adoption process.

Initiatives

1. The Central Adoption Resource Authority launched monthly Jan Sampark program to enable public to interact with its officials to obtain information.

2. The Jan Sampark program will now be held regularly every month apart from the quarterly Facebook live chat by CEO CARA.

Way forward

Adoption is a great way forward for the child to grow in an atmosphere of care and love and morals, at the same time, awareness and vigilance is necessary so that the children are not harassed in any way.

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