Adoption: Few takers for children with special needs
To improve the process of adoption in India, the government had modified and issued fresh adoption guidelines last year. Union Minister for Women and Child Development Maneka Sanjay Gandhi said: “1612 children are awaiting adoption as on March 4, 2016, as per information provided by the Central Adoption Resource Authority (CARA).”
As per CARA’s records, the highest number of children still awaiting adoption in various Specialized Adoption Agencies (SAAs) in each state hail from Maharashtra (350), Telangana (132), Andhra Pradesh (116), Orissa (112) and Madhya Pradesh (98). The total number of female children who are yet to be adopted is 1043, among whom 531 are with special needs.
Meanwhile, the total number of male children who are waiting to be adopted is 569, out of whom 311 are with special needs. “The number of children who are waiting to be adopted in various SAAs, including Government-run SAAs, is 1612. This consists of 770 normal children and 842 special need children,” Gandhi told Rajya Sabha, following a query on adoption.
Giving details of the adoption pattern as per parents’ gender preferences, the Minister said, “As per the information provided by CARA, the number of Prospective Adoptive Parents (PAPs) opting for girl child is 2724, for male child is 2836 and for either girl child or male child is 2159 as on March 4, 2016.”
According to the information provided by CARA, the number of PAPs registered for in-country and inter-country adoption is 7586 and 292 respectively. The in-country adoption in 2012-13, 2013-15 and 2015-16 was 4694, 3924 and 3988 respectively and the inter-country adoption in the corresponding years was 308, 430 and 374 respectively.
Gandhi also said, “In order to encourage in-country and inter-country adoption of children, the adoption procedure has been simplified and made online through Child Adoption Resource Information and Guidance System (CARINGS) since August 2015. The roles and responsibilities of authorities and agencies concerned, the timelines for completing various procedures in the process of adoption have been clearly defined in the adoption guidelines.”