Friday, April 27, 2007

Apex court directs govt to regulate child adoption

The Supreme Court has issued directives to the government to review overall domestic child adoption law, making it compatible with international law so to bring an end to child trafficking in the name of adoption.A division bench of Justices Khil Raj Regmi and Sharada Prasad Pundit passed the strictures directing the government authorities —the Prime Minister’s Office and the Cabinet, the Ministry of Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs and the Ministry of Women, Children and Social Welfare — to review the domestic legal provisions in this regard.Justices Regmi and Pundit signed the full text of the judgment yesterday and the SC is preparing to forward the text to the defendants for their initiatives to implement the directives.The bench directed the authorities to suitably amend the draft of the Civil Code 2006 before its promulgation and implementation, as it is now a public document. The bench ruled that the existing domestic legal provisions are not enough to regulate child adoption in the country.According to the figures of the Ministry of Women, Children and Social Welfare, 1,715 children were adopted after 2000. The Ministry of Home Affairs allows the inter-country adoption of children and Nepalese have been adopted in 17 countries, including US, Italy, France and Spain. On an average, more than 300 adopted children are sent abroad every year.Challenging the Adoption Chapter of the Country Code 1963, advocate Nirmala Uprety had filed a public interest litigation last year in the apex court. The Section 9 (b) of the chapter requires 30-year gap between the adopted father or mother and the child, but the same is not followed strictly.

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