LETTERS: Adoption Market
The issue of adoption, particularly inter-country adoption, has been a grey area for society, the media and governments ("Adoption market," June 3). Occasional scandals have been reverberating in regional papers. Frontline needs to be congratulated for such a fine investigative piece, and for providing the much-needed space for a discussion on an issue that has hitherto been secretive.
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The Cover Story was bold and persuasive. It has opened our eyes to what is going on behind the scenes. Your investigation clearly indicates that we have reached the stage where there is no respect for the law.
Bidyut Kumar Chatterjee
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The Cover Story reveals a shockingly crude and painful picture of the countrywide racket in child trafficking connected with inter-country adoption. The agencies involved are exploiting the loopholes in the guidelines prescribed by the Supreme Court and flouting the rules with impunity. The Central Adoption Resource Agency has no teeth. The government should intervene and pass an effective law to regulate adoptions, focussing on the interests and welfare of children.
V.K. Sathyavan Nair
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You have sweepingly trashed the whole adoption programme, which has benefited so many children and families. As a practitioner in this field for 30 years, I would say that there are only a handful of corrupt agencies. These agencies cannot exist without the support of government officials and other monitoring bodies, all of whom walk free after a scam unravels. It is also owing to criminal negligence that so many children died after being taken into government care.
The number of children going into adoption is miniscule. The rest are beneficiaries of sub-standard, or no care at all. The special needs programme, which constitutes a bulk of the inter-country adoption placements, is an unsung story of generosity of heart and spirit.
It is not a matter of instituting more checks and balances, but enforcing stringently the ones that are already in place. When malpractices are uncovered, everyone involved should be penalised.
Received on email
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Thank you for your open exploration of these abuses against the children of India.
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Highlighting the issue of corruption in inter-country adoption is essential in order to secure ethical guidelines for the international adoption industry, as this is a growing market worldwide.
Received on e-mail
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I am an American adoptive parent of a boy from West Bengal. I adopted from India because I believed what I had always heard: that millions of orphans live in institutions in India, and that there could never be enough adoptive families to fill the need. In the last few years, I have become more aware of a different reality: one in which Indian families are turned away from agencies who favour foreigners and their fees; one in which children who live in orphanages and not always orphans; one in which children may be procured to fill a need. It was never my intention to participate in a system that allows even one child to be improperly separated from his or her natural family in the guise of humanitarian work.
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I am so glad that your magazine has taken up the issue of inter-country adoption. If the authorities do not stop these practices, it is only the media that can stop this from happening in the future.
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