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Regional Conference of North-East states on Child Adoption

By Lisa

The Minister of Women & Child Development, Mrs. Maneka Gandhi inaugurated a One Day Regional Conference with North Eastern States in Shillong on the issues relating to Child Adoption. The conference is being held at State Convention Centre, Shillong.

The Ministers In-charge of Social Welfare and Women & Child Development in the North Eastern States of Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Sikkim and Tripura participated in the conference.

maneka gandhi

Such a conference is important as the number of children being adopted is coming down in India year after year. In 2010 5693 children were adopted in India and 628 children were adopted inter country. The figures for adoption from April 2015 to December 2015 are: 2210 and 455 respectively.

These poor figures of adoption are worrisome as there are millions of orphan children and there is no dearth of prospective adoptive parents too. Such conferences will sure help more children find happy homes and more homes find children to make them lively places.

The conference:

About 400 delegates attended the Conference, including the stakeholders from the State Adoption Resource Agencies (SARAs), District Child Protection Units (DCPUs), Child Welfare Committees (CWCs), Specialised Adoption Agencies (SAAs) and Child Care Institutions (CCIs) in the North Eastern States, besides the senior officers from the Ministry of Women & Child Development, Central Adoption Resource Authority (CARA) and the concerned Department of the State Governments in the region.

The conference has been organised with an aim to:

Familiarise the stakeholders with the adoption programme in North Eastern States about the provisions relating to adoption under the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2015; and

Orient them about the provisions of Adoption Guidelines - 2015 as well as the online adoption process through Child Adoption Resource Information and Guidance System (CARINGS).

New guidelines:

The Union Ministry of Women and Child Development issued revised Guidelines Governing Adoption of Children 2015 which became effective from August last year. The 2015 Guidelines issued by the Central Adoption Resource Authority (CARA) replaced the 2011 Adoption Guidelines.

These Guidelines are intended to provide for more effective regulation for adoption of orphan, abandoned and surrendered children and would bring more transparency and efficiency in the adoption system.

Simultaneously, Central Adoption Resource Information Guidance System (CARINGS), as an e-governance measure created for the purpose of facilitating adoption of children, has also been revamped.

For hassle-free adoption, CARINGS will contain a centralised data bank of adoptable children and Prospective Adoptive Parents (PAPs). Clear cut timelines for domestic and inter-country adoption have been laid down.

The revised guidelines coupled with the new IT enabled adoption system - CARINGS, provide a transparent process of adoption under which all the child care institutions of the country have been brought into an integrated system.

Act amended for streamlining adoption:

The Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2015 came into force from 15th January, 2016 and repeals the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2000.

The Act contains a separate new chapter on Adoption to streamline adoption of orphan, abandoned and surrendered children.

It gives the existing Central Adoption Resource Authority (CARA) the status of a statutory body to enable it to perform its function more effectively. Separate chapter (VIII) on Adoption provides for detailed provisions relating to adoption and punishments for not complying with the laid down procedure.

Processes have been streamlined with timelines for both in-country and inter-country adoption including declaring a child legally free for adoption.

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