Manisha (name changed) is 15 and brighteyed . She might be the regular teenager . The adults in contact with her say she is polite and disciplined and is always ready to help anyone in trouble. But Manisha is not a regular teenager and hers is no ordinary story. She lives in a home run by an NGO in Gurgaon for abandoned or abused children or those with special needs. She is the helpless victim of inter-country adoption gone terribly wrong.The American family also adopted Manisha's younger sister, but kept her when they sent Manisha back. Wonder how they explain that to her. I imagine that can be a difficult issue when there is a sibling group available for adoption, and a family is only interested in adopting one of the children. But it must be even more difficult to explain when you've adopted two, and sent one back . . . .
Six years ago, Manisha was adopted by an American family from a centre in Mumbai. But soon enough, they were unwilling to keep her, blaming Manisha's newly apparent hyperactivity, mood disorders and depression. Rejected and abandoned all over again, Manisha was sent across the seas and has been in the children's shelter from early 2010.
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If Manisha is indeed fine, she is one of the luckier ones. There are no statistics of the number of Manishas all over India — abandoned children, who were adopted overseas and then turned out like a troublesome puppy.
Still hoping for change
4 weeks ago