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A twist in Indian family tale

Adoption is no longer confined to single moms with dads too taking a cue, finds Sidhi Chadha.

sex and relationships Updated: Aug 07, 2013 11:41 IST

If hot biker and bachelor boy John Abraham’s plans to adopt a baby girl seems too incongruous to believe, it says something about us. Single parent adoption is not part of our pop culture.

Even more outlandish to the Indian psyche is the notion of a single man adopting a child! Wondering why a successful, single man would want to give up his freedom and assume the responsibilities of raising a child?

Paternal instincts The reasons are the same as for a single woman. Those who believe the desire to nurture is exclusive to a particular gender or married people or just couples live in an air bubble. Says John, “I want to have a daughter. I want to take her for rides on my bike. It will be wonderful to have her kiss my cheek as we zoom along!” But the legalities are riven with roadblocks for wannabe single fathers. There is a unilateral suspicion regarding the motive. It is understandable as the rights of the child need to be secured from possible paedophiles. But a pervasive threat perception is an affront to bonafide cases. Explains Richa Pathak, an adoption expert; “Single men face tougher scrutiny as they are asked intimate questions about their sexuality motives, friends and , lifestyle. They may be qualified to parent and still be turned down.” Sushmita Sen, the most recognised face of single motherhood, attests that women have an easier run with the laws of adoption.

Legal hoopla Ask TV heartthrob Rajeev Khandelwal who has been trying to adopt a baby for the past two years. “It’s so difficult for a single man to adopt that it’s unfair. If women can, why can’t men? I want to adopt a girl as a child will bring value to my life,” he says. Till then the actor is sponsoring an HIV positive girl. Even if he manages to adopt a child he may have to settle for guardianship.

Says Pathak, “Only Hindu singles and couples can adopt under the Hindu Adoptions and Maintenance Act. Non-Hindus can adopt under the Guardians and Wards Act,” Hot bachelor Brad Pitt also expressed the desire to adopt a baby but his , dream was realised when he had a love child with Angelina Jolie.

Even though only one in every ten Indian men wants to adopt, the trend is heartening. So we just may see John zipping with his baby girl on his hot wheels! Watch this space for more.

First Published: Feb 24, 2007 12:05 IST