DNA Tuesday, February 9, 2010
Twenty-one years after 85-year-old Clarice D’souza gave away Jennifer Haynes, 28, in adoption to US national George Hancox, she filed an affidavit in the Bombay high court, stating that she could not disclose the identity of her biological mother. Haynes was deported to India owing to incomplete adoption formalities at the time of her adoption in 1989. Haynes, who was separated from her American husband and two children — aged six and five — as a result of her abrupt deportation, had alleged various malpractices under the guise of foreign adoptions and sought action against the Americans for International Aid and Adoption that processed her adoption. Refuting allegations made by Haynes, D’souza, a trustee of the now defunct Kuanyin Charitable Trust from where Haynes was adopted, has stated that many children are adopted by US nationals and they settle and adapt well. D’souza has stated that Haynes allegations are baseless and her petition in court is not maintainable, as she has not exhausted the remedies available to her. An exasperated Haynes said: “More than anything else, I want to go back to my children. But now that I am here in India I want to know something about myself, my family, my mother. I don’t want to go back to the US empty-handed.” But D’souza’s affidavit suggests she will have to remain clueless about her parents. The 85-year-old said that revealing her mother’s identity would be a breach of confidentiality her mother was promised at the time of surrendering her child. She also states that it is now over 20 years since the documents were submitted to the court and she does not have them anymore. Haynes’s advocate Pradeep Havnur has sought two weeks time from the court to file a reply.