“Don’t want girl to get away from her culture”: Jaishankar on baby Ariha Shah case – World News Network

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Surat (Gujarat) [India], April 1 (ANI): External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar said that India does not want baby Ariha Shah to get away from her own culture and environment as she is in the custody of Child Services in Germany.
He said that some of the Indians embassy officials have been spending time with Ariha and they have been trying to find some solution so that girl is taught about her own culture.
While addressing a press conference in Gujarat, Jaishankar said that he has also met Ariha’s parents, and the Indian government has been holding talks with German authorities over the issue for a long time.
Asked about Baby Ariha, who has been in German foster care, Jaishankar responded, “Everyone knows about this case. I have myself met parents of the baby. The problem in the case is that the custody of the girl is given to child service. They have made some allegations which I cannot reveal in public as it is a private issue. We have been holding talks with German authorities over the issue for a long time. There are two issues as it is a court case and it takes time in court.”
“We do not want this girl to get away from her culture, from her environment and if she is in the custody of Child Services, their environment is German and not Indian. Some progress has been made, some of our officials of our embassy meet the girl and spend time with her. We are just trying to find some solution that girl is taught about her own culture. Even if she can’t be handed over to her natural parents, we are discussing if any other Indian family can come forward,” she added.
The child, Ariha Shah, was accidentally hurt by her grandmother in September 2021 following which the German authorities took the baby away.
She is currently in German foster care. Since Baby Ariha’s family urged the authorities to look into their matter, the Indian government has consistently raised the issue with the German authorities.
Earlier this month, a Jain delegation met German Ambassador to India Philipp Ackermann and highlighted the “heartbreaking” situation of Baby Ariha, who is in German foster care and requested him to work on handing over the child’s custody to the Indian government.
“Real pleasure to meet with senior representatives of the Indian Jain community today. Discussed issues of common concern. Encouraged by the goodwill and dedication amongst the community,” the German envoy posted on X.
The delegation highlighted the trouble and instability being faced due to the frequent changes of foster care mothers of the three-year-olds.
“Ariha’s situation is heartbreaking. Ariha’s foster carer in Germany is going to be changed in May 2024 for the third time in just two and a half years, causing significant instability in her life. Every time Ariha is taught to call the foster carer as ‘mother’ and in few months Ariha is shifted to the new foster carer and again calling new person as ‘mother’,” the Jain delegation said in a press release.
They said that the frequent changes in Ariha’s foster mother not only has a “deep psychological impact” on her but also “expose the inability” of the German child services in terms of the resources and also about their lack of sensitivity to foster such small children with love and affection.
The delegation requested the German Ambassador consider a Jain foster family in India for Ariha, the release stated.
“The Indian Foreign Ministry is working on this case for a long time with its channels. The Jain community’s only hope now rests with Prime Minister Narendra Modi. They implore his immediate diplomatic intervention to bring Ariha home to India, where she can finally find the stability and cultural connection she deserves. This is not just a custody battle. This is a fight for a child’s well-being. Baby Ariha Shah deserves better. This case will establish the benchmark for the millions of such NRI families who are struggling to gets justice in such child services related cases abroad,” the Jain delegation added. (ANI)


Disclaimer: This story is auto-generated from a syndicated feed of ANI; only the image & headline may have been reworked by News Services Division of World News Network Inc Ltd and Palghar News and Pune News and World News


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