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Norwegian official lauds court decision on children custody row

Chennai , Wed, 25 Apr 2012 ANI

Chennai, Apr 24 (ANI): State Secretary of Norwegian Ministry of Environment, Heidi Sorensen, on Tuesday lauded the ruling of the court to hand over two Indian children in foster care to their paternal uncle in India, and said the decision was in the kids' 'best interests'.

Welcoming the developments in the case, Sorensen appreciated New Delhi government's close cooperation in resolving the issue.

"We are very happy that this issue has been solved in the best of interest of the children. We have had a close dialogue with the government of India through this process and I really appreciate the active and constructive engagement of the college of government of India on this," said Sorensen

"I think that has been crucial for me to say that I do not think, at least we do not hope, that this will have affect on the relationships. I think the outcome of this case, we are very happy for," she added.

The kids, Abhigyan and Aishwarya, arrived here this morning and were received by their maternal grandparents.

On Monday, a Norwegian court had handed over the two NRI children in foster care to their paternal uncle, ending months of a custody row that saw India stepping up diplomatic pressure on Norway to send the kids back.

Norway's Children Welfare Service (CWS), which had kept the children in foster care since May last year, made a recommendation to the Stavanger District court that the children's custody should be given to the uncle and that they should be allowed to return to India.

Three-year-old Abhigyan and one-year-old Aishwarya were placed in the care of two different foster families in Norway. The Norwegian authorities had earlier said the children were taken away, as their parents, Sagarika and Anurup, were not taking proper care of them.

The parents, however, claimed that the authorities took exception to the cultural differences such as sleeping with the children and breastfeeding the daughter at scheduled times, as opposed to when she cried. (ANI)

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