The Basics of Adoption

In its literal sense, adoption means legally acquiring an orphan or destitute child or in some cases even somebody else’s child  for the purpose of giving him/her a good and decent life. The underlying  idea is to foster a lifelong relationship with the child, which ought to  withstand the  test of time. Indeed the  emotional factor plays a key role  in motivating individuals  to consider adoption in the very first place and in the years that follow.

People go in for adoption under the following circumstances

a) when they are unable to have children of their own

b) if their child/children have met with a premature death and the couples desperately wish to fill the void, by bringing in other children into their lives – as probably the last measure to procure some emotional fulfillment.

In a largely orthodox Indian society, adoption has largely  been frowned upon. The reasons being total ignorance and lack of information about the child to be adopted. For the orthodox people purity of blood, good family lineage, social status and reputation et al are of utmost importance, the ultimate objective being maintenance of family reputation and class distinction. They fail to realise the humane aspect of adoption — -that a lonely and insecure child finds a happy and secure home. Nevertheless, where adoptions have taken place they have been within the family circle, in order to retain the genetic alignment and cultural affinity.

The following criteria is applicable in case you plan to adopt a child

  • You must be a citizen of India.
  • You must also be an adult and demonstrate proof of financial stability.
  • You must be of sound mind and sound health.
  • You must be below 40 years of age.
  • You must be firm in your convictions that the child will enrich your lives.

Will the adopted child be legally yours?

If you are a Hindu, the adoption is done under the Hindu Adoption And maintenance Act 1956. Others can take the custody of the child under the Guardians & Wards Act Of 1890 through the Competent Court. Those who live abroad can adopt under respective local laws.

For the security and good future of both the child and the parents it is essential to follow all appropriate procedures by going to a registered agency. A registered agency is licensed to process adoptions by both the state govt and the Ministry of Welfare. It is a non-profit voluntary organization, active in various aspects of child welfare. Such organisations have experienced, qualified and committed social workers to provide complete support and counseling. A registered agency will ensure the legal status and security of the family unit and will provide detailed, thorough medical assessments of the child.

How to go about it?

By and large new born infants, others which are a few months old are brought forward for adoption. People also go in for adoption of children upto 4 or 5 years of age. Nowadays the social welfare organisations are advocating the adoption of girl children, in order to ameliorate the social status of the Girl Child.

The Coordinating Voluntary Adoption Resource Agency (CVARA) is an association of eight recognised agencies in Delhi. It is a coordinating supervisory and monitoring body modelled on the recommendations of the Supreme Court.The 8 adoption agencies are –

  • SOS Children’s Villages of India
    A-38 Kailash Colony, New Delhi
    Ph: 6431574

  • Holy Cross Social Service Centre
    34, Dr. Mukherjee Nagar (west)

  • Welfare Home For Children
    68, Raja Garden, New Delhi
    Ph: 5435694

  • Missionaries Of Charity
    Nirmala Shishu Bhawan, 12, Commissioner’s Lane

  • Udayan
    No1, Doctor’s Lane, Gole Market, New Delhi
    Ph: 3733739

  • Delhi Council Of Child Welfare
    Qudsia Garden,Yamuna Marg
    Civil Lines, Delhi
    Ph: 2518907

  • Church Of North India
    Shishu Sangopan Griha
    St Michael’s Church Compound
    Hospital Road, Jangpura, New Delhi

  • Matri Chhaya
    1226,Sector A,Pocket B
    Vasant Kunj, New Delhi
    Ph: 6893476


  • The prospective parents should avoid private adoptions because the medicalstatus of the child is not assessed.
  • No criteria are applied and no counselling services offered.
  • The child may not be free for adoption and in some cases legalisation of adoption may not be done.

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