New Delhi: In a
breakthrough in the NRI children custody row, the Norwegian Child Welfare
Service has decided to award the custody of two children to the brother of
their father enabling him to bring them back to India.
week, the Child Welfare Service (CWS) in Stavanger completed its talks
with the uncle in the child welfare case concerning two Indian children.
It has been concluded that care of the two children should be awarded to
the brother of the children’s father enabling him to take the children
back to India," CWS said in a press statement. The proposed solution will
be presented on March 23, the provisional date for the hearing, to
Stavanger District Court which will take the final decision in the case.
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This arrangement requires, however, that the Child Welfare Service
ensures that the necessary legal framework and follow-up procedures are in
place in order to safeguard the children’s best interests and enable the
uncle to deal with the situation in the best possible way, CWS said.
(1) and Aishwarya (3), children of Anurup and Sagarika Bhattacharya, an
NRI couple living there, were taken away by Barnevarne Norwegian CWS last
May on the ground of "emotional disconnect" and put in a foster home.
of External Affairs has been making huge efforts to impress upon the
Norwegian authorities to find an amicable and urgent solution to the row
with Minister S M Krishna assuring that the children would be brought home
at "any cost". In the statement, the CWS also said "the Norwegian
authorities will ask the Indian authorities to ensure the necessary
follow-up for the children in the event of their return to India".
order to process the case concerning the two Indian children who were
taken into the care of Stavanger municipality and placed in a Norwegian
foster home, the Child Welfare Service has had to apply for an extension
to the Children’s residence permits," it said.
"Extending the residence permit for the children in a case such as this is
a practical technicality and does not mean that the Child Welfare Service
is seeking to keep the children in Norway for longer than is necessary to
arrive at a satisfactory solution to the case," it added.