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Delhi HC says Adoption not limited by religion

GS Paper 2

Topics Covered: Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.



The Delhi High Court has ruled that a person interested in adopting a child was not limited by his or her religion, if adoption was sought under the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act.


What’s the case?

The court was hearing a case where Christian couple had adopted a child under the Hindu law.

  • The court has said that Christian and Muslim couples could not adopt a Hindu child under the Hindu Adoptions and Maintenance Act (HAMA).
  • However, since the child was being well taken care of by the foster parents and their family and the court said there is no cause to remove the child from their charge and custody.
  • Also no legal issues could arise in future since the Child has been adopted as per the Hindu adoption ceremony known as ‘Datta Homam’.


Legal Framework Governing Adoption Laws in India:

  1. In India, adoption falls under the ambit of personal laws, and due to the incidence of diverse religions practised in our country, mainly two different laws operate.
  2. Muslims, Christians, Parsis, and Jews are governed by the Guardians and Wards Act, 1890, as formal adoption is not allowed in these religions.
  3. Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists, and Jains, on the other hand, follow the Hindu Adoption and Maintenance Act, 1956.
  4. Juvenile Justice Act also delas  with adoption.


Insta Curious:

Did you know about the Eligibility criteria for prospective adoptive parents? Read here



Prelims Link:

  1. About the Central Adoption Regulatory Authority.
  2. Procedure for adoption in India.
  3. Eligibility.
  4. About the JJ Act.

Mains Link:

Discuss the need for adoption procedure reforms in India.

Sources: the Hindu.