India has asserted that it is important for the child to be in her linguistic, religious, cultural and social environment.
The Ministry of External Affairs urging German authorities to send Ariha Shah, the 27-month-old Indian girl who has been living in foster care in Berlin since September 2021, back to India at the earliest has given her mother “a lot of hope”, she said in an interview with news agency PTI.
Ariha’s mother Dhara Shah had earlier said she and her husband had taken the baby to a doctor in September 2021 after they spotted blood in her diaper. They took Ariha back home when the doctor gave the all-clear, but when she was taken for a follow-up, the hospital handed Ariha over to German child services and an attempt was made to accuse the parents of sexually abusing her.
“The MEA has released a very strong statement, asking German authorities to send Ariha (Shah) back to India at the earliest. This has given us a lot of hope that Ariha will soon return to her country,” Dhara Shah told PTI.
VIDEO | “The MEA has released a very strong statement, asking German authorities to send Ariha (Shah) back to India at the earliest. This has given us a lot of hope that Ariha will soon return to her country,” says Dhara Shah, mother of the Indian baby girl who has been living in… pic.twitter.com/t9I4lB5QaC
— Press Trust of India (@PTI_News) June 3, 2023
India asserted that it is important for the child to be in her linguistic, religious, cultural and social environment.
External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said Ariha’s continued stay in German foster care and “infringement” of her social, cultural and linguistic rights is of deep concern to the government of India and the parents.
“We would like to reiterate that Ariha Shah is an Indian national and her nationality and socio-cultural background is the most important determinant of where her foster care is to be provided,” External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said.
“We urge German authorities to do all that is necessary to send Ariha to India at the earliest, which is also her inalienable right as an Indian national. We remain committed to ensuring the return of Ariha Shah to India,” he said.
Dhara Shah on Friday said that if there will be a Prime Minister-level intervention in the case, then her daughter can return to India.
CPI(M) MP John Brittas and 58 other members of Parliament belonging to 19 political parties had on Friday signed a joint letter addressed to the German Ambassador to India for the repatriation of the two-year-old baby girl.
“59 Members of Parliament belonging to 19 parties across the political spectrum have come together to lend a united voice for the repatriation of a two-year-old baby girl currently in German foster care back to India,” the media release said.