Fatima and Salya

Countries: India, Australia

Adoption Agencies: Malaysian Social Service (India), Queensland State Authority

the parents Fatima and Salya attend the High Court in India in 2010 as part of their struggle to get access to their daughter.

Fatima (left) and Salya attend the High Court in India in 2010.

Fatima and Salya are the parents of four children.  In 1998,  one of them, then two-year-old was sold to a corrupt adoption agency that  forged  records to make it appear she had been abandoned. She was adopted by  a family in Queensland, Australia.

Indian police uncovered the scam in 2005 and arrested the child-stealers who  provided details of the children  who  were stolen. Their information was  matched with adoption agency records  that confirmed Zabeen’s situation,  prompting police to alert Australian authorities. They  said they would  investigate, but did not return the girl to India.

Fatima and her husband Salya, who have three other children, say since then   their efforts to be reunited with the girl have been  rebuffed by Australian  authorities and the girl’s adoptive family while Indian authorities appear  powerless to lobby for the girl’s return.

Against Child Trafficking has been assisting the Indian family since 2007 in their efforts to reconnect with their daughter.