HYDERABAD: For Oruganti Hari Prasad and Vempati Baswanti, a childless couple from Anantapur in Andhra Pradesh who are into their 50s, the wait was worth as they had to go through a lengthy process to legally adopt a child.After staying here for over a week, during which they interacted with the girl who they wanted to adopt through a Specialised Adoption Agency (SAA) and had a meeting with a medical officer, regional joint director, Shishu Vihar in-charge officer and others officials, they went home with 17-year-old Ruchika in October, 2021.
Like Hari Prasad and Vempati Baswanti, many childless couples were able to legally adopt children thanks to the efforts of Women Development and Child Welfare (WDCW) department, which is currently celebrating November, the International Adoption Awareness Month by organising programmes and interactive sessions to promote legal adoption process.
As per the data provided by WDCW department, a total of 1,430 kids were adopted since June 2014. Between April and October this year, a total of 127 children were adopted from Telangana, out of which 111 were in-country adoptions and 16 inter-country adoptions.
On Friday, the WDCW Department conducted a programme -- dance-drama to promote legal adoption as well as an interactive session with aspiring parents and the children. According to experts, a medically fit couple or individual below the age of 55 years who are financially stable and have no criminal records can adopt a child legally through the Central Adoption Resource Authority (CARA), a statutory body of the central ministry of WDCW. Even though the process is little lengthy and requires the parents to wait
for a period of three to four years, it is important to adopt the children the right way, they said.
“Adoptions which don’t have a proper legality attached to it are illegal. These adoptions mostly occur under the garb of child marriage or trafficking,” said Rama Devi, Member of Child Welfare Committee.
“Even if parents are raising the child properly, it is necessary to find out where they get the child from,” she explained, adding that the legality can be obtained by two Acts -- Hindu Adoption and Management Act and Juvenile Justice Care and Protection of Children Act.
Helpline to be launched
Speaking on the occasion, WDCW department secretary D Divya revealed that the Women and Child Development department will soon launch a helpdesk to answer the queries regarding adoption and help parents to manage the long waiting period. “In collaboration with NGO — Where Are India’s Children, we are trying to speed up the adoption process,” she said.