The JJ Law allows adoption through specialized adoption agencies under strict procedures established by the Central Adoption Resource Authority (CARA) to ensure that no child is illegally given up for adoption . But HAMA is a personal law that does not have a review process, allowing parents to resort to enforcing adoption acts to avoid procedures under the adoption regulation.
FoJ founder Avinash Kumar said there was no information available about adoptions under HAMA, they decided to file an RTI seeking information with Stock Holding Corporation of India Limited, the only one seller of electronic stamp papers. In 2018, the number of electronic stamp papers issued for adoption deeds was 3,779, 4,992 in 2019 and until November 10 of this year, 4,513 stamp papers had been issued despite the pandemic.
Although the number of electronic stamps issued is not a measure of the exact number of adoptions that may have been carried out, it certainly shows that a very large number of adoptions are occurring outside of JJ law without any control and actual numbers can be much higher.
Meanwhile, the number of parents awaiting adoption is increasing. Data collected by FoJ on the CARA website shows that as of November, approximately 30,000 prospective adoptive parents (PAPs) were registered with CARA and the number of children available in the adoption pool was only 2. 289. Of the total number of children, 57% are in the special needs category and those in the most sought-after age group under 2 years of age barely total 178. Over the past three years, the number of children Domestic adoptions executed according to CARA were 3276 in 2017-18, 3374 in 2018-19 and 3,351 in 2019-20.
Even the Center has struggled with this problem and a review was launched earlier this year by CARA to see how to bridge the gap between the two laws to ensure that all adopted children go through an official, registered adoption pool.