Press Trust of india

Remove ‘illegitimate’ child reference, enact comprehensive law on guardianship applicable to all: Par panel

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New Delhi: A parliamentary panel is learned to have recommended omitting the reference to “illegitimate child” from the adoption law, saying that no child is illegitimate whether born within or out of wedlock.

The panel has also underlined the need to enact a single comprehensive law covering guardianship aspects of various categories of persons and applicable to all, irrespective of religion, sources said.

Parliamentary Standing Committee on Personnel, Public Grievances, Law and Justice chaired by senior BJP leader Sushil Modi made this recommendation while reviewing the “Guardians and Wards Act”.

The panel is likely to table its report on ‘Review of Guardianship and Adoption Laws, in the ongoing Monsoon session.

The committee in the report is understood to have suggested that it strongly feels that the word ‘illegitimate’ should be omitted as no child is illegitimate and the law should be the same for all children whether born within or out of wedlock.

The committee feels that there is a need to amend the Guardians and Wards Act to give primacy to the ‘welfare principle” over parental authority.

The committee is also of the view that there is a need to define what constitutes the welfare of the child in broader terms in both the Acts, the sources said.

The amended Act should also facilitate guardianship of elderly persons as there may be circumstances where a senior citizen may reach a stage where the health concerns become overwhelming and they may need a guardian to take care of their health and well-being, the panel has suggested.

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