India’s nodal adoption agency, Child Adoption Regulatory Authority (CARA), has withdrawn its circular from earlier this year which prohibited individuals in live-in relationships to adopt children from and within the country.
CARA had, in a circular issued on 31 May 2018, barred applicants in a live-in relationship from adopting a child, stating that “the Authority would like the children to be placed only with a stable family, and individuals in a live-in relationship cannot be considered as stable family”.
“We have decided to withdraw the circular, and applications from prospective adoptive parents will be examined on a case-by-case basis,” RK Shrivastava, Secretary, Women and Child Development Ministry, told The Hindu on Thursday, 20 September.
The decision was taken at the last meeting of the steering committee of CARA, chaired by Shrivastava, in August, and will benefit both domestic and international applicants.
According to the eligibility criteria of Adoption Regulations 2017, single women are permitted to adopt a child of any gender, whereas men can adopt only boys. For married couples, the persons have to be in a ‘stable’ marriage for at least two years before gaining permission. Applicants need to be physically, financially and mentally stable to adopt a child.