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Report No. 263

6. Salient Features of The Hague Convention, 1980

6.1 Essentially, the Hague Convention, 1980 seeks to achieve two objectives namely-to protect a child from the harmful effect of such removal; and to secure prompt return and re-integration of the child in an environment of his or her 'habitual residence'; and both these objectives correspond to the specific idea as to what constitutes the 'best interest of the child'.

6.2 Salient features of the Hague Convention, 1980 are:

  • It ensures rapid procedure for the return of the child wrongly removed to or retained in contracting party to its country of 'habitual residence';
  • It ensures that rights of custody and of access under the law of one of the Contracting States are effectively respected in another Contracting State;
  • It re-establishes status quo ante by returning the child to the country of 'habitual residence';
  • A return order is not a final determination of the issue of custody, rather, it provides for return of the child to the jurisdiction which is most appropriate to determine the issues of custody and access; and
  • Each country that has signed the Convention must have established a Central Authority, which processes such applications. The Convention lays down certain roles and functions of the Central Authority. This Authority must, inter alia, help locate children; encourage amicable solutions and; help process requests for return of children.

Protection of Children (Inter-Country Removal and Retention) Bill, 2016 Back

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