SC asks Centre, states to frame rules for intra and inter country adoption

SC asks Centre, states to frame rules for intra and inter country adoption

The Supreme Court today asked the Centre and states to frame rules, regulations and guidelines under the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2015 to make inter and intra country adoptions more transparent.

“The interest of children, whether it is intra-country or inter-country adoptions, has to be protected. The process of adoption has to be transparent. It should ensure welfare of the child”, a three-judge bench headed by Chief Justice T S Thakur said.

“We are told that the new Act is a comprehensive legislation on subjects involving care and protection of children including adoption. So a legislative framework is there but some regulations are required to make it effective. We hope and trust the authorities concerned take speedy steps. Children are to be protected against abuse and trafficking. The beneficial legislation may be made more effective to provide succor to children who may be adopted by framing necessary rules and regulations”, said the bench.

Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2015 which came into effect from January 15 this year also establishes a strong framework to provide care and protection to children and streamline the process of adoption.

The Central Adoption Research Agency has been asked to frame the rules for adoption, which will be implemented by state and district level agencies.

The court was disposing off a PIL by NGO Advait Foundation seeking a moratorium on foreigners adopting Indian children, alleging that many children who are being illegally taken away to foreign countries faced post-adoption abuse.

This was due to the absence of any inter-country adoption guidelines combined with apathy and total apathy from Central Adoption Research Agency (CARA), the PIL alleged.

The NGOs had told the apex court that while Indian couples wait endlessly, approximately 600 to 800 Indian children are adopted annually by foreigners easily by paying huge amounts to international agents through whom they fraudulently obtain consent from parents.

On the plea by the NGO’s lawyer Kunal Cheema for a CBI probe into a massive adoption racket operating in the country involving Indian and foreign adoption agencies, the bench said it could be considered if specific instances were brought to the attention of the court.

The NGO told the apex court that while Indian couples wait endlessly, approximately 600 to 800 Indian children are adopted annually by foreigners easily by paying huge amounts to international agents through whom they fraudulently obtain consent from parents.