“Restore the child to Anupama”: top Indian academics write to Pinarayi Vijayan

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India’s top academics have written firm letters to Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan urging him to return the child to Anumpa Chandran, whose parents gave her baby to an adoption center without her consent.

Anupama, 22, has been on hunger strike in Thiruvananthapuram since October 23, demanding action against the police and the Kerala Council for Child Welfare.

Economist Padmini Swaminathan, in her letter, said social scientists have always viewed Kerala as a beacon of social development, but she remained numb and shattered after reading the story of the incident. child abduction.

“That the entire state apparatus, apparently at the request of parents who are important officials of the ruling party, has been deployed to not only separate the baby, mother and father, but hem them so that reparation requires disentangling many, many complex issues that have been deliberately tied together, reveals the deep and destructive patriarchal foundations of the party and the family. It is clear that there is collusion everywhere, so that “deviants” like Anupama and Ajith receive a lesson and the “honor” of Anupama’s native family is “restored”, “he said. she writes.

She said the child’s biological parents are not minors. “On what basis then, and on whose complaint did the state trigger this complex multi-agency operation?” Needless to say, it is not just the honor of the ruling party that is at stake here; this is clearly a case of a criminal offense involving the kidnapping, theft and abduction of a child from his legal guardians, ”she said.

She concluded the letter by asking Vijayan if she could expect him to exercise his authority. “As the most progressive head of state in the country, can we expect, sir, that you will exercise your authority and end the search for this mother and return her child to her.”

Shocking’
Former professor at the Center for Social Medicine and Community Health at Jawaharlal Nehru University, Mohan Rao, said in his letter that he was an admirer of Kerala’s vast achievements in social development, but news of the withdrawal forced of a young child for adoption shocked him. .

Even more shocking is that this was done at the request of the infant’s grandparents seeking to protect their family ‘honor’ in Kerala. While I am aware that patriarchy is deeply embedded in the social fabric of Kerala, it is in Kerala that we expect the struggle against entrenched patriarchy to begin, led by progressive forces who believe in equality and justice that includes gender equality and gender justice, ”he wrote.

He said there can be no justification for the actions of the young mother’s parents. “The perversion of the state apparatus to help them under the watchful eye of a left-wing government must be quickly corrected. Officials of the Child Protection Committee who have clearly colluded in this matter must be removed from their posts until the investigation is completed. Indeed, letting them stay in their positions only perpetuates injustice, ”he wrote.

Rao stressed that the problem is not simply to restore a child to its real parents. “It is the abuse of the machinery of government to achieve a socially regressive end and the use of disinformation and outright bureaucratic delay to slow down and thereby deny justice to those wronged. The prospect of tyranny is thus advanced – and it is no honor for a communist government which retains the hope of redeeming itself from right-wing oppression, ”he declared.

He called on Vijayan to restore the confidence of the aggrieved couple by “taking the necessary measures to prevent the manipulation of the annulment of the adoption procedure by the suspect officials and to ensure transparent procedures and expeditious justice”.

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