Mother and Child Health – Immunization Program, BPBB, PMJSY, PMMSY, etc.

Panel moots district-level survey to bring more children into adoption ambit


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level: CARA

Mains level: Child Adoption

A report recently tabled on “Review of Guardianship and Adoption Laws” in Parliament has stated that- India despite a country with millions of orphans, there are only 2,430 children available for adoption.

What is the news?

  • There are many enthusiastic parents who are ready to adopt children.
  • To address this paradox, a Parliamentary panel has recommended district-level surveys to proactively identify orphaned and abandoned children.
  • According to the report, there were 27,939 prospective parents registered with the Child Adoption Resource Authority (CARA) as on December 2021, up from nearly 18,000 in 2017.

What is CARA?

  • Central Adoption Resource Authority (CARA) is an autonomous and statutory body of the Ministry of Women and Child Development. It was set up in 1990.
  • It functions as the nodal body for the adoption of Indian children and is mandated to monitor and regulate in-country and inter-country adoptions.
  • CARA is designated as the Central Authority to deal with inter-country adoptions in accordance with the provisions of the 1993 Hague Convention on Inter-country Adoption, ratified India in 2003.
  • It primarily deals with the adoption of orphaned, abandoned and surrendered children through its associated and recognized adoption agencies.

Adoption Process

  • The eligibility of prospective adoptive parents living in India, duly registered on the Child Adoption Resource Information and Guidance System (CARINGS), irrespective of marital status and religion, is Procedure for adoption adjudged by specialised adoption agencies preparing home study reports.
  • The specialized adoption agency then secures court orders approving the adoption.
  • All non-resident persons approach authorized adoption agencies in their foreign country of residence for registration under CARINGS.
  • Their eligibility is adjudged by authorised foreign adoption agencies through home study reports.
  • CARA then issues a pre-adoption ‘no objection’ certificate for foster care, followed by a court adoption order.
  • A final ‘no objection’ certificate from CARA or a conformity certificate under the adoption convention is mandatory for a passport and visa to leave India.

What else regulates child adoption?

  • The Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2015 permits the adoption of same-sex children, allowing biological or adopted parents to adopt a child of the same gender.
  • A single or divorced person can adopt under the JJ Act, but a single male cannot adopt a girl child.
  • According the Hindu Adoption and Maintenance Act, 1956 (HAMA), a Hindu parent or guardian can place a child for adoption with another Hindu parent under the Act.
  • A prospective parent can also adopt a male child if he has no other male children or grandchildren, or a female child if he has no other female children or grandchildren.

Issues with child adoption in India

  • Parent-centrism: The current adoption approach is very parent-centred, but parents must make it child-centred.
  • Age of child: Most Indian parents also want a child between the ages of zero and two, believing that this is when the parent-child bond is formed.
  • Institutional issues: Because the ratio of abandoned children to children in institutionalised care is lopsided, there are not enough children available for adoption.
  • Lineage discrimination: Most Indians have a distorted view of adoption because they want their genes, blood, and lineage to be passed down to their children.
  • Red-tapism: Child adoption is also not so easy task after the Juvenile Justice Rules of 2016 and the Adoption Regulations of 2017 were launched.


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