Women and Child Development Minister Smriti Irani asked the child welfare committees on Sunday to visit child-care homes and review the cases of older children who could be made free for adoption as soon as possible.
Many children living in child-care homes are not legally free for adoption.
According to official figures, there are around 66,000 children residing child-care homes across the country and less than 3,000 of them are legally free for adoption.
Speaking at a regional symposium on "Child Protection, Safety and Child Welfare" that was attended by child welfare committee members and officials from child-care institutions among others, Irani asked the CWCs to visit the child-care homes and review the cases of older children who could be made free for adoption at the earliest.
Irani said the women and child development ministry has already reviewed two states, looked into 9,000 cases of older children and identified 164 such children who could be made legally free for adoption.
She also asked the child-care homes to look into the infrastructure gaps in their areas and requested the apex child rights body -- National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) -- to review these gaps and present them to the ministry so that they can be brought up in the upcoming budget.
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