Bengal To Introduce Strict Adoption Rules To Prevent Child Trafficking

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Kolkata: In an attempt to stop child trafficking, the West Bengal government has decided to step up vigilance of the state’s orphanages and ensure police verification of the adopters before they are given a child’s custody, a minister said on Tuesday.

“I have made it mandatory for the Child Welfare Committee (CWC) and the child protection unit present in each district to visit every children’s home and orphanages in the district every week and to submit their performance reports to us,” Child Development Minister Sashi Panja said.

“According to the new Juvenile Justice Act, all such children who are languishing in the children’s homes for years would be now put up for adoption,” she said, but added that all those willing to adopt a child would have to pass through a police verification before adoption.

“The people willing to adopt a child would be only given permission if they come clean in police verification in addition to other criteria like family background, income etc that was previously there,” said an official.

The announcements followed recent unearthing of several child trafficking rackets in the state, with nursing homes, NGOs and orphanages coming under the scanner.

The Criminal Investigation Department has arrested 21 people from three different districts for allegedly being directly involved or abetting the trafficking of newborns.

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