NEW DELHI: New adoption regulations issued by the women and child development ministry lay out the process for district magistrates to issue adoption orders which earlier fell in the domain of the courts till the amended Juvenile Justice Model (Amendment) Rule 2022 came into force on September 1.
With the district magistrates (DM) getting a maximum of two months to pass adoption orders, adoption agencies have to file an application for an order from the DM through the District Child Protection Unit within 10 days of matching the child with prospective adoptive parents.
The regulations stipulate a three-day period for the Child Welfare Committees to declare an abandoned or orphan child as legally free for adoption after expiry of two months from the date of the child’s appearance before the CWC in case of kids upto two years. For those above two, four months have to pass.
Foster care for ‘hard to place’ kids in new adoption guidelines
The adoption regulations 2022 elaborate on rehab options for “hard to place” children who are not being adopted after being declared legally free for adoption. This category of children will be eligible for foster care by suitable foster parents.
A list of such children along with other categories of children will be accessible to District Child Protection Unit and the State Adoption Resource Agency through the adoption portal of Central Adoption Resource Authority (CARA). The foster families willing to adopt such children will register themselves on the portal which is being revamped.
Even as the amended JJ rules notified by the central government on September 1 sought immediate transfer of all pending cases in courts to district magistrates, the adoption regulations that lay out the execution process to enable the DMs to issue the orders have been notified in the gazette on September 23 and put out by CARA on Tuesday.
Incidentally, amid rising concern among parents, on September 12, the ministry of women and child development wrote to all states to direct the authorities concerned to transfer all cases from the courts to the DM to prevent any further delay in passing of adoption orders. TOI had reported earlier that the fear of further delay due to the administrative process of transfer of cases from court and then passage of adoption orders by the DM was worrying adoptive parents.
The new adoption regulations that replace the 2017 regulations reiterate that “all the cases pertaining to adoption matters pending before the court shall stand transferred to the DM from the date of notification of these regulations. In cases of fresh applications, DM shall issue adoption order within a period of two months from the date of filing of the application.”