Why Safeguards for Child adoptions Needs to be Followed Strictly?

Synopsis: In India Pandemic has increased the number of orphans in the country. Negligence for legal procedures of Child adoption creates a ground for Child trafficking of these orphans.

 Background
  • According to UNICEF, India has over 30 million orphan and abandoned children.
  • The Pandemic has left many more children orphaned due to the death of their parents by Covid-19 infection.
  • Today, some people are offering such infants for instant adoption without following proper legal safeguards.
  • Moreover, some child trafficking rackets are exploiting negligence for legal procedures of adoption and hasty sentimental considerations by people.
Child Adoption laws in India
  • The Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) law was enacted in 2015.
    • It is a secular law and all persons are free to adopt children under this law. It also allows the adoption of Children of relatives.
    • Only, those children can be adopted who are declared legally eligible for adoption under the Juvenile Justice Act.
  • Adoption Regulations of 2017:
    • Rehabilitation of all orphaned, abandoned, and surrendered children is regulated by the strict mandatory procedures of the Adoption Regulations.
    • Violation of the Juvenile Justice Act and the Adoption Regulations invites punishment up to three years and a fine of ₹1 lakh, or both.
  • CARA (The Central Adoption Resource Authority):
    • The Juvenile Justice Rules of 2016 and the Adoption Regulations of 2017 provided for the creation of CARA.
    • It is a statutory body, and it looks after the regulation, monitoring, and control of all intra-country and inter-country adoptions.
    • India became the signatory to the Hague Convention on Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Inter-country Adoptions. Thus, CARA was designated as the nodal agency to grant a no-objection certificate for all inter-country adoptions.
  • India is also a signatory to the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child: It provides a legal mandate of all authorities and courts to offer protection to children.
Procedure for legal Adoption in India
  • First, parents willing to adopt children should register on the Child Adoption Resource Information and Guidance System (CARINGS)
  • Then, specialized adoption agencies will be adjudging the eligibility of prospective adoptive parents living in India based on home study reports.
  • If approved, prospective children are offered as per seniority in the adoption list and pre-adoption foster care follows.
  • The specialized adoption agency then secures court orders approving the adoption.

For NRI’s,

  • They need to approach authorised adoption agencies in their foreign country of residence for registration under CARINGS.
  • Their eligibility is adjudged by authorised foreign adoption agencies through home study reports.
  • As per seniority, they are offered profiles of children, and child study reports are finalized.
  • CARA then issues a pre-adoption ‘no objection’ certificate for foster care, followed by a court adoption order. No objection certificate from CARA is mandatory for a passport and visa to leave India.

What needs to be done to prevent the child trafficking rackets from misusing child adoption system?

  • One, CARA needs to conduct an outreach program to inform citizens about misuse of illegal adoption.
  • Two, the legal process of adoption must be adequately publicized.
  • Three, The National and State Commissions for Protection of Child Rights are empowered by law to take effective action against those engaging in illegal activities. They need to ensure safety of Children through increased Vigilance.
  • Four, Social activists, NGOs and enlightened individuals must report all the incidents that come to their notice.
  • Five, Media shaming of those involved in Child trafficking can deter the crime to some extent.

Source: The Hindu


Speeding up the adoption process

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