Cabinet approves proposal to make DMs approving authority for adoptions

The Union Cabinet today gave its nod to a proposal to make district magistrates, instead of courts, the final authority for approving adoptions.

Since courts are overburdened and take a long time to approve adoptions, the district magistrates would now be the approving authority, Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad, briefing reporters after the Cabinet meeting, said.

District magistrates are in-charge of the child custody authority and have all the information about the child. The Cabinet has decided to make the district magistrates the (final) authority to sign the adoption order, he said.

Union Women and Child Development Minister Maneka Gandhi had said that the ministry was going to amend the Juvenile Justice (JJ) Act to make district magistrates and collectors “competent officers” for approving adoptions, instead of courts.

The move aims to reduce the number of adoption cases pending in courts for years and since the DMs also have information about the adoption cases and have access to all the departments, it would be easier for them to get the documents and act faster, a senior WCD ministry official said.

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