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CARA & SARA


CARA & SARA
CARA & SARA

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Definitions

  • Section 2(57) “Specialised Adoption Agency” means an institution established by the State Government or by a voluntary or non-governmental organisation and recognised under section 65, for housing orphans, abandoned and surrendered children, placed there by order of the Committee, for the purpose of adoption.


  • Section 2(53) “State Agency” means the State Adoption Resource Agency set up by the State Government for dealing with adoption and related matters under section 67.



Section 65. Specialised Adoption Agencies

  • Recognition and Purpose: Each district shall have one or more institutions or organizations recognized as Specialised Adoption Agencies by the State Government. This recognition is granted according to the guidelines outlined in the adoption regulations set by the Authority. These agencies are tasked with the rehabilitation of orphaned, abandoned, or surrendered children through both adoption and non-institutional care.


  • Information Sharing: The State Agency is responsible for providing the Authority with the names, addresses, and contact details of the Specialised Adoption Agencies, along with copies of their recognition or renewal certificates or letters. This information exchange occurs promptly upon the recognition or renewal of these agencies.


  • Inspection and Remedial Measures: The State Government is mandated to conduct inspections of every Specialised Adoption Agency at least once a year. If any deficiencies or shortcomings are identified during these inspections, appropriate remedial actions must be taken promptly.


  • Penalties for Default: Specialised Adoption Agencies failing to fulfill their obligations, such as obtaining legal clearance for orphaned or abandoned children for adoption, completing home study reports for prospective adoptive parents, or obtaining adoption orders within the stipulated time frame, may face penalties. Such penalties may include fines of up to fifty thousand rupees. In cases of repeated defaults, the State Government reserves the right to withdraw the recognition granted to the Specialised Adoption Agency.

 
 

Section 66. Adoption of Children in Non-Registered Institutions

  • Reporting and Declaration: Institutions registered under this Act, which have not been recognized as Specialised Adoption Agencies, must ensure that all orphaned, abandoned, or surrendered children under their care are reported to the Committee. These children must be produced and declared legally free for adoption, following the provisions outlined in section 38.


  • Linkages with Specialised Adoption Agencies: These institutions must establish formal linkages with nearby Specialised Adoption Agencies. They are required to provide details of children declared legally free for adoption to the Specialised Adoption Agency, along with all relevant records. This is to facilitate the placement of such children in adoption.


  • Penalties for Non-Compliance: Institutions failing to comply with the reporting and linkage requirements may be fined fifty thousand rupees for each instance. This fine will be imposed by the registering authority. Persistent non-compliance may also lead to de-recognition of the institution.



Section 67. State Adoption Resource Agency

The State Government shall set up a State Adoption Resource Agency for dealing with adoptions and related matters in the State under the guidance of Authority. The State Agency, wherever already exists, shall be deemed to be set up under this Act.



Section 68. Central Adoption Resource Authority

The Central Adoption Resource Agency, which was established before the enactment of this Act, is hereby deemed to be constituted as the Central Adoption Resource Authority under this Act. It is tasked with the following functions:


(a) Promoting in-country adoptions and facilitating inter-State adoptions in collaboration with State Agencies.


(b) Regulating inter-country adoptions to ensure adherence to established guidelines and standards.


(c) Formulating regulations on adoption and associated matters as required.


(d) Carrying out the responsibilities of the Central Authority under the Hague Convention on Protection of Children and Cooperation in respect of Inter-country Adoption.


(e) Performing any other functions as prescribed by the relevant authorities.



Section 69. Steering Committee of the Authority

The Authority shall establish a Steering Committee comprised of the following members:


(a) Chairperson: Secretary, Ministry of Women and Child Development, Government of India, serving ex officio.


(b) Joint Secretary, Ministry of Women and Child Development, Government of India, responsible for overseeing the Authority, serving ex officio.


(c) Joint Secretary, Ministry of Women and Child Development, Government of India, responsible for finance matters related to the Authority, serving ex officio.


(d) Representation from one State Adoption Resource Agency and two Specialised Adoption Agencies.


(e) Representation from one adoptive parent and one adoptee.


(f) Legal expert or professor specializing in family law with a minimum of ten years of experience.


(g) Member-Secretary, who will also serve as the Chief Executive Officer of the organization.

The selection or nomination criteria for members mentioned in clauses (d) to (f) of subsection (1), their tenure, and the terms and conditions of their appointment shall be as prescribed.


The functions of the Steering Committee include:


(a) Overseeing the functioning of the Authority and periodically reviewing its operations for effectiveness.


(b) Approving the annual budget, annual accounts, audit reports, action plans, and annual reports of the Authority.


(c) Adopting recruitment rules, service rules, financial rules, and other regulations for administrative and programmatic powers within the organization, subject to prior approval from the Central Government.


(d) Any other functions delegated by the Central Government.


The Steering Committee shall convene monthly as prescribed. The Authority shall operate from its headquarters and establish regional offices as deemed necessary for its functions.

 
 

Section 70. Powers of the Authority

For the effective execution of its functions, the Authority is vested with the following powers:


(a) Issuing instructions to any Specialised Adoption Agency, Children's Home, or any child care institution accommodating orphaned, abandoned, or surrendered children, as well as to any State Agency or authorized foreign adoption agency. These instructions must be adhered to by the respective agencies.


(b) Recommending to the relevant Government or Authority to take suitable action against any official, functionary, or institution under its administrative jurisdiction in cases of persistent non-compliance with the issued instructions.


(c) Referring cases of persistent non-compliance by any official, functionary, or institution to a Magistrate with jurisdiction to adjudicate on the matter. The Magistrate receiving such cases will proceed to hear them as if they were forwarded under section 346 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 (2 of 1974).


(d) Exercising any other powers delegated to it by the Central Government.


In the event of any disagreement in an adoption case, including disputes regarding the eligibility of prospective adoptive parents or the suitability of a child for adoption, the decision of the Authority shall prevail.


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