Adopted boy to have mother’s caste: Bombay high court | Latest News India - Hindustan Times
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Adopted boy to have mother’s caste: Bombay high court

ByKanchan Chaudhari, Mumbai
Mar 10, 2022 12:45 AM IST

The Bombay high court has directed the Dharavi division deputy collector to issue a caste certificate within two weeks to the adopted son of a single mother, assigning him the same caste as her

The Bombay high court has directed the Dharavi division deputy collector to issue a caste certificate within two weeks to the adopted son of a single mother, assigning him the same caste as her.

The Bombay high court has directed the Dharavi division deputy collector to issue a caste certificate within two weeks to the adopted son of a single mother, assigning him the same caste as her.
The Bombay high court has directed the Dharavi division deputy collector to issue a caste certificate within two weeks to the adopted son of a single mother, assigning him the same caste as her.

A division bench of justices Sunil Shukre and GA Sanap passed an operative order on Tuesday allowing the petition filed by the 44-year-old doctor, a Borivali West resident. A detailed order is expected in due course.

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In the petition, filed through advocate Pradeep Havnur, the woman said the process to adopt the boy was approved by the Bombay City Civil Court in October 2009.

The woman, who belongs to the Hindu Mahyavanshi (scheduled caste) community, then applied to the deputy collector in 2016 for a caste certificate for her son seeking the same caste. On September 3 that year, the deputy collector rejected her plea, saying her documents could not be accepted for assigning the same caste.

The District Caste Scrutiny Committee for Mumbai city rejected her appeal against the deputy collector’s order on November 30, 2017 citing absence of specific legal provisions covering adopted children. The woman then moved the high court.

Havnur said the petitioner had adopted the boy and therefore, the minor was entitled to all the benefits, advantages and concessions that were legitimately available to her, being a member of a scheduled caste community. Therefore, he could not have been denied a certificate, assigning him the caste of his mother, the advocate said.

He also pointed out that the revenue authorities discriminated against her son since he was adopted and therefore, the orders were violative of the constitutional provisions extending protection to the Scheduled Castes.

In support of his contention, Havnur pointed to the 2012 judgement of the Supreme Court in Rameshbhai Naika’s case, holding that in case of a marriage between a tribal and a non-tribal, determination of the caste of the offspring is essentially a question of fact.

In this case, the apex court further said that the presumption that the child took the caste of the father was rebuttable and it was open to the child to lead evidence to show that he/she was brought up by the mother, who belonged to a scheduled caste/scheduled tribe and he did not have any advantageous start in life, but on the contrary, suffered the deprivations, indignities, humilities and handicaps of the community to which his/her mother belonged.

In this backdrop, Havnur submitted that the adopted child had spent over 12 years with the family of the petitioner and therefore, he was entitled to the certificate assigning him the same caste as that of the petitioner.

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