January 9, 2016 1:55:36 am
THE Bombay High Court Friday asked the Central Adoption Resource Agency (CARA) to consider an alternative to the new adoption guidelines in light of the numerous complaints from people seeking to adopt a child and NGOs facilitating the adoption process.
The HC said that “the efficacy of the new adoption guidelines will have to be tested” on the basis of statistical data which has been collected since the new guidelines were implemented. The bench was hearing a petition filed against the current online adoption process.
A bench of Justices V M Kanade and Revati Mohite-Dere directed CARA to look into the grievances of prospective adoptive parents and report back to the court. Several NGOs had also raised the issue of ensuring transparency in the adoption process.
The petitioners’ lawyer Shirin Merchant as well as senior advocate Mihir Desai, the amicus curiae appointed to assist the court in the matter, informed the bench on Friday that they had received countless letters from such parents complaining against the current process.
They submitted that ever since the new guidelines have been notified in July this year, cases of successful domestic adoption in the state had practically come to a standstill. Advocate Merchant cited a recent case study where a Pune-based couple seeking to adopt a girl child has been unable to do so despite a Specialised Adoption Agency (SAA) in the same city having a six-year-old orphan girl child with them because the new guidelines do not allow SAAs to facilitate any interaction or counselling between prospective parents and a child.
“The home study and checks on this couple was conducted by an NGO, yet they cannot introduce the couple to the girl child because of the new guidelines,” Merchant said.
At this, the bench directed CARA to get over such “technicalities” and look into the above case. The court has now directed CARA to file a reply by February 3.
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