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Now we have a new legislation called "Juvenile & Justice Act, 2015" replacing the JJ Act of 2000. In this new act, adoption has assumed a significant importance with an exclusive chapter. Subscribe and follow this blog for more information in the days to come.

Friday, May 08, 2009

Adoption and arranged marriages

Recently I was talking to a good friend who is also an adoptive father who said that in India chances of arranging a marriage (through an arranged marriage) for an adopted child are zero. I couldn’t believe what I had heard and it set me on to search for answers.

First of all let me tell you what an arranged marriage is: It is a marriage agreed between two families. In olden days (I mean when my parents got married more than 45 years ago), families got together with their son/ daughter, talked and then decided if they should proceed to have a marriage arranged for their children. Bride/ Bridegroom to be had very little to express but went along with their families choices.

Nowadays also families do the same but the difference is that they involve the bride/ bridegroom to be to express themselves and to get to know each other before they proceed to arrange a wedding.

In our culture, families take great pride in arranging a wedding for their children. Families try to look for that perfect match for their child. When I say ‘perfect match’ it refers to more or less to homogenous attributes. Matching religions, castes, education, wealth, employment, language and community etc. Families do their own informal investigations through the networks of their friends & families to reach their own conclusions.

Now, with this background on arranged marriages, what does it got to do about adoption? Why is it that an adopted child’s chance to have an arranged marriage becomes zero? Well…if you put the two together, families have nothing to investigate about the birth family of a child and probably don’t consider an adoptive family as a ‘real’ family and don’t give a hoot about them.

This could be so hurtful and unfair to someone who didn’t choose to be an adopted child. To me, marriage is between two hearts and two herds, in that stated order. There’s not a single homogenous attribute that is greater than two hearts agreeing to commit, communicate and compromise to live in harmony. Period.