Makkala Nyaya Makkala Rakshanae: Key Terminology of the JJ Act

In this episode of Makkala Nyaya Makkala Rakshanae, RJ Manjula and Nagasimha dig deep into some of the most important terms mentioned in India’s Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2015.

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Nagasimha points out the key definitions of different words related to Adoption:

‘adoption’ means the process through which the adopted child is permanently separated from his biological parents and becomes the lawful child of his adoptive parents with all the rights, privileges and responsibilities that are attached to a biological child;

‘adoption regulations’ means the regulations framed by the Authority and notified by the Central Government in respect of adoption;

‘administrator’ means any district official, not below the rank of Deputy Secretary to the State, on whom magisterial powers have been conferred;

‘aftercare’ means making provision of support, financial or otherwise, to persons, who have completed the age of eighteen years but have not completed the age of twenty-one years, and have left any institutional care to join the mainstream of the society;

The most important word after this is ‘authorised foreign adoption agency’ which means a foreign social or child welfare agency that is authorised by the Central Adoption Resource Authority.

If anyone wants to adopt then they have to follow certain guidelines which are called Central Adoption Resource Authority (CARA) guidelines. The guidelines are as follows:

  1. Parents who want to adopt should not be above 90 years of age.
  2. The age difference between the parents and children should not be more than 24 years.
  3. Unmarried male and female will also be eligible to adopt, but children of their respective genders only.
  4. Financial stability must be good.
  5. Eligibility for adoption will also depend on the emotional health of the applicant

‘Authority’ means the Central Adoption Resource Authority.

‘begging’ means —

(i) soliciting or receiving alms in a public place or entering into any private premises for the purpose of soliciting or receiving alms, under any pretense.

(ii) exposing or exhibiting with the object of obtaining or extorting alms, any sore, wound, injury, deformity or disease, whether of himself or of any other person or of an animal. For example, Nagasimha mentioned the case of a child whose tongue was cut off and they were put to beg on the streets; disabled children illicit more sympathy and money. Finally, the kid was rescued.

‘best interest of child’ means the basis for any decision taken regarding the child, to ensure fulfillment of his basic rights and needs, identity, social well-being, and physical, emotional and intellectual development. For example, if a child refuses to go to school, we definitely will force them and send them to school no matter how much they cry. This is because we know that education is important for the child’s future. This action can be classfied as being in the best interest of the child.

‘Board’ means a Juvenile Justice Board constituted under Section 4;

‘Central Authority’ means the Government department recognised as such under the Hague Convention on Protection of Children and Cooperation in Inter-country Adoption (1993);

‘child’ means a person who has not completed eighteen years of age;

‘child in conflict with law’ means a child who is alleged or found to have committed an offense and who has not completed eighteen years of age on the date of commission of such offense;

‘child in need of care and protection’ means a child who is found homeless, working in contravention of labour laws, injured, exploited, abused, neglected, injured, threatened to kill, (and more);

This discussion is followed by a real-life radio drama about a child being forced into beggary. Initially, she refused to beg but after five days of forced starvation, her tongue is cut off and she sent out to beg.

Listen in for more:

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