Plea in Delhi High Court against Adoption Regulations barring parents with two children from adopting third ‘normal child’

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A plea has been filed before the Delhi High Court challenging the changes made in the Adoption Regulations issued under the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2015 barring parents from adopting a ‘normal child’ if they already have two children.

A normal child is a child who is not suffering from any disability as provided under the Rights of Persons With Disabilities Act.

The petition was filed by one Jesi Jeevarathinam, who has two biological children and applied for adoption a child in December 2020.

The plea stated that the Steering Committee Resource Authority decided to implement the Adoption Regulations, 2022 with retrospective effect and such a decision was arbitrary, unreasonable and violative of Article 14 of the Constitution.

The Court was told that the petitioner applied for adoption of third child under the Adoption Regulations, 2017 which was in vogue at that time. These Regulations barred parents with three or more children from adopting a ‘normal child’.

“Pertinently, the 2022 Regulations came into force on 23rd September 2022 i.e., the date of the notification in official Gazette. The said Regulations do not provide for retrospective implementation and hence, the Committee’s decision to implement the Regulations retrospectively is contrary to the settled law that any Statute/Rules/Regulations have a prospective operation unless the Statute/Rules/Regulations specifically provide for its retrospective operation,” the plea stated.

After considering the case, Justice Prathiba M Singh passed an order on May 2, 2023 directing the authorities to retain the petitioner’s name in the waiting list.

If she becomes eligible for any referral either under the 2017 regulations or under the 2022 Regulations, an intimation shall be given to her, the Court directed.

“In addition, it is directed that the restoration of the petitioner in the seniority list shall be given effect to within one week,” the Court ordered.

The case will now be considered on July 12 along with a similar matter.

Advocates Mrinalini Sen, Kaif Khan and Sanya Panjwani appeared for the petitioner.

Central Government Standing Counsel Rakesh Kumar with Advocates Rupali GP and Suni appeared for the Respondents..

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