Women and Child Development Minister Maneka Gandhi has ordered all the states to get the child-care homes run by the Mother Teresa-founded Missionaries of Charity (MoC) inspected immediately, after cases of alleged illegal adoptions carried out by the homes came to light recently.
Gandhi also directed the states to ensure that all the child-care institutions (CCIs) were registered and linked to the country's apex adoption body within a month.
According to the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2015, registration of CCIs and their linking with the Central Adoption Resource Authority (CARA) is mandatory, but some orphanages have challenged the validity of the clause, an official in the Women and Child Development Ministry said.
Taking cognisance of the cases of alleged illegal adoptions carried out by the MoC in Jharkhand, Gandhi has said she has ordered all the states to get the child-care homes run by the organisation inspected immediately.
A shelter home run by the MoC in Ranchi has allegedly been involved in 'selling' three children and 'giving away' another one. When contacted by PTI, the MoC denied the allegations and said they were ready for any kind of inspection.
In 2015, an ideological row between the ministry and the MoC surfaced over issues like MoCs' denial to give children to separated or divorced parents.
Secondly, there was also a conflict over MoCs not allowing adoption by single parents. Gandhi had said the government would have to derecognise the organisation if it continued to defy the revised guidelines.
"They have cited ideological issues with our adoption guidelines related to giving a child up for adoption to single, unwed mothers. They have their own agenda and now when they have to come under a unified secular agenda, they are refusing it," the minister had said in a statement in 2015.
Following the ideological row, the Missionaries of Charity has decided to stop putting children up for adoption.