Adoption can’t be restricted to those in need of care: HC | India News

NAGPUR: In a landmark verdict, the Nagpur bench of the Bombay high court has ruled that adoption can’t be restricted to orphaned, abandoned and surrendered children, those in conflict with law or ones in need of care and protection.
While partly allowing a revision application filed by the biological and adoptive parents of a girl, Justice Manish Pitale quashed the Yavatmal district court’s order rejecting their adoption plea. The district court held that provisions of the Juvenile Justice Act, 2015, weren’t applicable in this case since the child wasn’t abandoned, orphaned or surrendered, or in conflict with law and in need of care and protection.
“A perusal of the JJ Act shows that an elaborate procedure is laid down and contemplated for adoption of a child by relatives, who are also specified under the said enactment. If adoption was to be restrictively applicable only to children in conflict with law or those in need of care and protection, such elaborate provisions governing the procedure for adoption by relatives or step-parents wouldn’t have been provided,” the HC said.
Justice Pitale directed the Yavatmal judge to hear the application once again on merit, while considering the new provisions of the legislation.
After both set of parents knocked the judiciary’s doors through counsel Ira Khisti, the HC had appointed Firdos Mirza as amicus curiae to assist it. The latter informed that if the JJ Act, 2015, is compared to the earlier enactment, Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2000, it becomes evident that various new provisions have been enacted in the law, thereby broadening the scope of legislation and including in its fold specific procedure for adoption of children.
Pointing out to Chapter VIII of the JJ Act, 2015, he contended that no such chapter existed in the earlier Act and that this is a significant departure. He also stated Section 2(3) defines ‘adoption regulations’, 2(12) defines ‘child’, 2(52) defines ‘relative’ and 2(57) defines ‘Specialized Adoption Agency’ to contend there was a conscious departure from JJ Act, 2000.
Quoting adoption regulations of 2017, Justice Pitale said those have been framed by exercising powers under the JJ Act, 2015. “…The JJ Act, 2015, not only intends to take care of children, who are in conflict with law and those in need of care and protection, but also to provide for and regulate adoption of children from relatives and step-parents”.

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