As a law firm, it is imperative that we comprehend the legal provisions and their implications on our clients. The Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection) Act, 2015 lays down extensive guidelines for the protection and care of children in need of assistance or care. Section 71 of this Act mandates all institutions catering to such children to maintain records of their nationality and citizenship status.
This provision is applicable across all states in India, irrespective of citizenship or residency status. It aims to ensure that every child’s rights are protected without any discrimination based on their nationality or citizenship.
The relevance of Section 71 becomes even more significant when viewed through the lens of Non-Resident Indians (NRI). NRIs often have children who hold dual citizenship or may not possess Indian citizenship at all. Hence, it becomes crucial for them to understand how this provision affects them while dealing with issues related to childcare.
In light of recent controversies involving custody battles over NRI children born abroad but having an Indian parentage, courts have been increasingly vigilant about ensuring that these cases adhere strictly to legal provisions laid down by the government. In many instances where one parent has settled abroad with a minor child without the other parent’s consent, courts have taken action against such non-compliance under The Hague Convention on Child Abduction and The Juvenile Justice (Care And Protection) Act.
1. In Gaurav Nagpal v Sumedha Nagpal (2009), father took his six-year-old son from mother’s custody without her consent; later he filed divorce proceedings seeking joint custody but due to interference with mother’s visitation rights was held guilty under Sections 10 &12(2)(iv), Hindu Marriage Act along with contempt proceedings were initiated against him under Sec/120 Criminal Procedure Code.
2. In Surya Vadanan vs State Of Tamil Nadu And Others(2015), Supreme Court directed Central Authority appointed under the Hague Convention on Child Abduction to facilitate the return of two children from their father residing in the USA, while mother sought for a Protective Order under Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection) Act.
3. In Vishal Kapoor v Union of India(2017), Delhi HC directed State of Uttar Pradesh to record citizenship status of minor girl which was caught by UP police at Nepal Border without travel documents
4. In Naeem Uddin Khan vs State Of U.P. And Ors.(2019), Allahabad High Court, pondered upon need to invoke child protection laws when it came across a case where an Indian appeals court granted custody to Pakistani mother who had taken her daughter on vacation trip and decided not go back to India.
This provision ensures that NRIs are accountable for their actions concerning childcare within Indian jurisdiction since they cannot evade legal ramifications even if they reside abroad. It can also provide NRIs with added security as this provision may help them in claiming their rights over issues related to child custody or adoption cases.
In conclusion, Section 71 of The Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection) Act is crucial in protecting children’s welfare irrespective of nationality or citizenship status throughout all states’ jurisdictions. For Non-Resident Indians (NRI), this provision serves as an additional layer of accountability for ensuring compliance with the law concerning issues related to childcare within India’s jurisdiction, including adoption and custody battles. As lawyers, it is our duty to ensure our clients understand these provisions fully so that they stay committed towards providing safe, secure environments for those under their care or guardianship.