The second alarming wave wreaks havoc in India leaving multitudes of infants and children in India orphaned, some have lost their parents even at birth. COVID-19 is brutally cruel to infants and children who are in turmoil after losing their parents and carers. A significant number of the COVID Orphans have lost both their parents/carers and have no one to look after them. Surviving parent has become incapable to take care of their own infants and children either due to their hospitalization and/or financial and/or psychological constraints. “Reluctant relatives reveal a fickle and/or a fragile mental state!”
Overflowing calls for adoption of these abandoned COVID orphans are being flooded on social media. However such routes can squarely be detrimental or even dangerous to the welfare of infants and children.
Commoners are paralyzed from saving those who are dying due to this deadly virus, nevertheless humanity is still alive. Good Samaritans exists, and the most recent hails from Italy, Simonetta Filippini and Enzo Galli, an Italian couple from Campi Bisenzio, who left to India for international adoption 15days ago and returned to Italy with their newly adopted ‘Indian child.
’On the contrary, COVID Orphans run the risk of being commodities, subject to illegal adoptions and/or child trafficking and remain extremely vulnerable. The Indian Government ought to act immediately in welfare of the COVID Orphans:
1. Immediate intervention of State Machinery is a dire necessity.
2. Urgent Institutional response by setting up a “Special Commission or Special Committee” and/or appointing ‘Nodal Officers’ both nationally and internationally to address the needs of the COVID Orphans is need of the hour.
3. Collaborations with International Organizations, Foreign Orphanages, Foreign Institutions or individuals aboard in creating ease of immediate access for ‘international adoption[s]’ and/or consider other viable options soonest.
The customary processes of “Legal Adoptions” are exceptionally time- consuming. The surge of COVID death has left a ghastly sting leaving huge number of COVID Orphans; the pain is felt and India ought to act and react conscientiously and swiftly hoping and praying for help to outpour to these parentless generation.
( Dottoressa. Maffi, Advocate, holds a degree in law from London, a Legum Magister in Legal Practice from the City University, UK, A Master of Arts in Human Rights, a Legum Magister from United Nations Interregional Crime and Justice Research Institute, Italy and a Certificate in Migration and its link to Peace, Security, and Sustainable Development Agenda from University for Peace, Costa Rica.)