Adopting child directly from biological parents is no offence under JJ Act: Karnataka High Court

  • Sukriti Mishra
  • 07:16 PM, 12 May 2022

The Karnataka High Court, Dharwad Bench has recently held that in absence of a declaration that a child is deserted by his biological or adoptive parents or guardians, filing of charge sheet under Section 80 of the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act 2015, is without any substance.

A single-judge bench of Justice Hemant Chandangoudar while allowing the petition filed by the two couples, quashed the proceedings initiated against them under the JJ Act.

In the charge sheet, it was alleged that accused no.3 had taken the adoption of the daughter who was born to accused no.1 and 2 without following the provision prescribed under the JJ Act and thus was an offense punishable under Section 80 of the Act.

The Magistrate took cognizance of the offence and issued summons to the petitioners. Against the same, the petitioners filed a petition in the High Court.

The counsel for the petitioner submitted that the child which is alleged to have been taken in adoption by accused No.3 is not an orphan, abandoned, or surrendered child to constitute the commission of an offence punishable under Section 80 of the Act.

Taking note of the same, Court stated, “A person is stated to have committed an offence if he/she takes a child on adoption who is an orphan, abandoned or surrendered child without following the provisions or procedures as provided under the Act”.

Further, Court pointed out that in the present case, the child in question was not an abandoned child or orphan, or surrendered child as defined under Sections 2(1), 2(42), and 2(60) of the Act.

Thus, in the absence of any declaration that the child is deserted by his biological or adoptive parents or guardians, the filing of the charge sheet is also without any substance, Court ordered.

Accordingly, the bench allowed the petition and quashed the proceedings against the petitioners.

Case Title: Banu Begum and Ors. v. the State of Karnataka