There are children languishing in orphanages across India for over three years despite people applying to adopt them, because of delays in the legal process of adoption. This, despite a Supreme Court ruling that cases be processed within two months from the date of application.
Concerned over the number of children stuck in orphanages, Union Minister for Women and Child Development Krishna Tirath has written to Law Minister Veerappa Moily.
Sources told HT that Tirath’s appeal to Moily came after she learnt at an internal meeting, that the cases of several children in the care of the Uttar Pradesh State Council had been pending for over three years due to legal delays.
“In addition, cases of over 150 children housed with the Missionaries of Charity in Kolkata were pending. Other cases were from Ashray in Bangalore, the Sant Bhure Lal Trust in Punjab and nari niketans in Punjab, the minister was informed,” sources said.
A ministry official said that, “Dr Moily has been going out of his way to help with legislations concerning women and children and we are very hopeful he will do something about this…it concerns the lives of so many unfortunate children.”
In her letter to the Law Minister, Tirath pointed out despite rules and guidelines “in practice …the legal process to adopt a child carries on well beyond the stipulated two months. The objective of adoption, is in a way, compromised by the delay…kindly intervene…for expediting the legal process so that the time taken by the Courts is in conformity with the rulings of the Supreme Court of India.”
In the case of L.K. Pandey versus the Union of India (1984), the Supreme Court had directed that petitions for adoptions should be disposed of expeditiously. And as far as possible within a period of two months from the date of filing the application.