KATHMANDU, Jan 9: Amidst concern from various quarters that the process of inter-country adoption of street children is subject to widespread abuses, the government has banned the adoption effective from January 5.
According to Ministry of Women, Children and Social Welfare, the decision is taken in the wake of media and various diplomatic missions raising issue that many street children sent for inter-country adoption could have their biological parents in Nepal searching for them.
Diplomatic missions have also raised questions about the credibility of documents prepared for the inter-country adoption of the street children.
In a public notice, the ministry said street children registered in orphanage and children´s home by police would not be sent for inter-country adoption henceforth. “It is informed to all concerned that the ministry will start a special campaign for street children found by police,” the notice said.
The government had recently introduced an amendment in the conditions and procedures related to inter-country adoption to address the concerns raised by various international communities. As per the existing rules governing adoption, the government recognizes a child as orphan if he/she is found unattended at a hospital or found unattended by police or left with no one to care after the death of all kin including parents.
There are concerns from various quarters that many of the street children found by police and subsequently registered with children´s home or orphanage for inter-country adoption actually have their parents. There are also complaints that in many cases children are sent for inter-country adoption using forged documents.