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It happens only in India: An adoption record in five lines


By Mayura Janwalkar

The 35-year-old record of the inter-country adoption of Daksha Van Dijck, which the Bombay high court had directed its registry to trace, turned out to be four-five handwritten lines in the registry’s record.

Van Dijck, now a psychologist, was adopted in 1975 by Dutch national Johan Van Dijck and raised in Netherlands. She came back to India in 2001 in search of her biological parents. But in the course of tracing them what Van Dijck found was a reason to believe that she may have been kidnapped as a baby and given away in a foreign adoption.

On the last occasion, the court had asked the registry to locate the documents related to Van Dijck’s adoption. On Monday, the prothonotary and senior master A Rodrigues showed the record available to the court. As per the record of 1975 produced by the registry, a handwritten entry made in blue ink states the name of Alibera and Company as advocates for the petitioners and the name of a representative of the Indian Council of Social Welfare.

The entry states, “Petition granted.”

The registry so far has not been unable to trace an order of the court granting the custody of Van Dijck to her adoptive parents. 
Van Dijck who lives in Maastricht in Netherlands has moved the Bombay high court along with Anjali Pawar-Kate of Against Child Trafficking, an international NGO, against commissioner of police (CP), Mumbai and the senior inspector of police of the Matunga police station seeking a court direction for them to register an FIR against Shraddhashram Mahilasharm based on a complaint filed by Van Dijck.

On Monday, her advocate Shabana Ansari told the court that there is no police inquiry report in terms of the adoption but a mere affidavit stating that the child (Van Dijck) is free for adoption. Ansari added that according to a Supreme Court ruling, a child cannot be declared free for adoption before birth or within three months of its birth. However, in this case, Van Dijck was declared free from adoption in a month after her birth on August 30, 1975.

Justice BH Marlapalle and justice Anoop Mohta have directed the registry to contact Shraddhashram Mahilasharm for the adoption records and adjourned the case till August 13.

2010 Aug 10