After Karan Johar, telly couple Gurmeet Choudhary and Debina Bonnerjee become parents!
The couple has adopted two girls and would be bringing them home soon!
Even as everyone is getting ready to celebrate the colours of Holi, TV actors Gurmeet Choudhary and Debina Banerjee are getting ready to bring in the biggest celebration of their life two days after Holi.
The couple will go all the way to Jarampur, a small village in Bihar, Gurmeet's paternal village, to bring home their two daughters, aged 6 and 9.
Pooja and Lata, the two little girls who will complete the family, both belong to Gurmeet’s paternal village. Pooja is an orphan, while Lata’s father passed away some time back. Gurmeet’s parents realised that the girls would have to work as domestic help to sustain themselves, and soon Gurmeet heard about it too.
"All the paperwork is done. We will be going to Jarampur for the final signatures after Holi. It is a two-day process.Everybody, including my parents, keep asking me when I'm planning a baby. Well, it's official now, I'm bringing home two daughters and we couldn't be more excited," says Gurmeet.
The couple decided it would be best to bring the girls home legally by becoming their parents and providing them a home, education, name and life of their own. So will the transition happen immediately?
"I remember when I moved to Mumbai 13 years ago, life was a struggle for me till Ramayan came along in 2008 and I found my real life Sita in Debina," says Gurmeet.
Not so fast, as Gurmeet believes it is best to let the girls take the transition slowly, instead of uprooting them from their home. The girls will first study in Patna for a year and stay with his brother who would be taking care of the girls, before shifting in with their new parents.
It is a mere coincidence that just yesterday Karan Johar became the proud father of twins, a boy and a girl through surrogacy. Gurmeet further adds that generally, people in India adopt when they can't have a baby.
"The general belief is that you only adopt if you can't have children of your own.That's not true at all. Both Debina and I love kids and plan to have a couple of our own in the future. And when they come along they will be siblings for Pooja and Lata and all the Choudharys will happily live together under one roof," he told a leading national daily.
Adoption procedure in India
More and more young parents today are looking at adoption as a means to add to their family, even when they have biological children. Here are a few important things you need to keep in mind when you plan to adopt, as mentioned by CARA, Central Adoption Resource Authority.
1. Agency visit: Get a list of the adoption agencies near you, you can find out more about these on the CARA website, or at the Adoption Coordinating Agency (ACA) near you. You can also register for adoption counselling at the CARA website to know more. The counsellor will explain the process to you and also tell you about paperwork and other legal aspects.
2. Paperwork and registration: Your social worker will tell you all the papers you need to keep ready for the process. You will then have to submit the same to the adoption agency and get yourself registered.
3. Counselling and home visit: Once you are registered, the social worker from the respective agency will make a home visit and also ask you to have counselling sessions. The social worker will assess your overall responsibility and see if you are ready to become a parent. They will also go through your application to understand your strengths, weaknesses and other issues in respect to parenting.
4. Referring a child: As soon as there is a child up for adoption, the agency will inform you of the same. You will be given their physical examination report as well as a detailed description of their overall health and other information. When you are ready to proceed, the agency will show you the child in person and let you spend some time together. Once the agency feels that both the parent and the child are comfortable with each other, they will talk to you about further steps.
5. Official acceptance of the child: Once both the parent and the child’s side are ready to go ahead with the adoption, the agency will ask you to sign a few documents that will officially prove your readiness to accept the child as your own.
6. Filing the petition: The agency will submit all the documents, including the acceptance document, to a lawyer, who will then prepare the petition. You will be called to the court once the petition is ready and will have to sign it.
7. Pre-adoption foster care: After signing the petition, you will be allowed to take the child as part of a pre-adoption foster care plan. The agency workers will give you detailed information about the child’s everyday routine and needs.
8. Court hearing and order: A court hearing date will be set where you will have to appear along with the child. After a few regular questions, the judge will pass an order and also ask you to invest a given amount in the child’s name. After you make the investment, the judge will issue the order.
9. Follow up: Once the final adoption process is complete, the agency will have to submit follow-up reports to the court, detailing the well-being of the child. This can often go on for the first 1 or 2 years after the adoption.
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