Desi Diaspora Search Stories Calcutta is My Mother is a feature length documentary telling the story of one transracial adoptee’s first journey back to the city of her birth. Reshma McClintock was born and abandoned in Calcutta, India in March of 1980. She was adopted and arrived in Portland, Oregon, where she was raised, the following June. In this honest, raw film, Reshma details her connectedness to the family she knows and loves and her struggle with feeling disconnected from her Indian roots. The Orphan Keeper – Written by Camron Wright – “Based on a remarkable true story of Taj Rowland. Seven-year-old Chellamuthu’s life is forever changed when he is kidnapped from his village in India, sold to a Christian orphanage, and then adopted by an unsuspecting couple in the United States. It takes months before the boy can speak enough English to tell his parents that he already has a family back in India. Horrified, they try their best to track down his Indian family, but all avenues lead to dead ends. Meanwhile, they simply love him, change his name to Taj, enroll him in school, make him part of their family–and his story might have ended there had it not been for the pestering questions in his head: Who am I? Why was I taken? How do I get home? More than a decade later, Taj meets Priya, a girl from southern India with surprising ties to his past. Is she the key to unveil the secrets of his childhood or is it too late? And if he does make it back to India, how will he find his family with so few clues? From the best-selling author of The Rent Collector, this is a deeply moving and gripping journey of discovering one’s self and the unbreakable family bonds that connect us forever.” The Adoptee Rights Council is here to assist people adopted from India search for answers. The Adoptee Rights Council has proven that roots searches are both possible and successful. They believe they should be allowed and supported by the authorities. This is Where I Belong: A woman’s search for her birth mother – Excerpt from the story, “Looking back, Anusja said she was not upset with her birth mother for giving her up. But she was upset that her mother was forced to make that choice. “I was mad at the world,” she said, “I grew up in a country which offers so much support for vulnerable mothers. There was a system which assured that adoption was often the last resort.” Given up for adoption at birth, a young woman reclaims her life – Short news story written by Monisha, born in Sawantwadi, Maharashtra in the mid-1980s at a government hospital. Her mother was raped and blamed for the resultant pregnancy. Monisha was taken to Bal Anand Children’s Home in Mumbai that is run by Sulochana Kalro and adopted by a couple from the Netherlands at 7 months of age. The story is of her search. “My name is A.J. Bryant, a DC resident, adopted when I was one year old, from Kerala, India, commonly referred to as “God’s Own Country,” if only by me…I write about how my adoptee identity colors the way I look at life. I believe that everyone has a life narrative making our human interactions richer, like a many colored tapestry whose threads comprise our individual experiences.” He also has a short podcast which can also be found on the blog called, The Fairy Tale of an Indian Adoptee. You Follow – Taken from movie website “It’s 2009. Nisha Grayson packs her bags, and with four of her closest friends sets out on a journey from the home she has known for twenty eight years. She travels from Sacramento, CA to her birthplace in Goa India on a quest for answers, family and true identity. YOU FOLLOW chronicles the experiences of an adoptee with a mind full of questions and a heart full of determination. When steps in the right direction lead to forks in the road, when loyalty and commitment come from unlikely strangers – Nisha faces an emotional series of unexpected challenges that test her character.” Nisha also writes on The Adoptee Diary. Daughter of the Ganges – Taken from the book webpage “Growing up in an Indian orphanage, Asha Miró; dreamed that someday she would be adopted. At the age of six, her wish finally came true, but only at the misfortune of another. A Catalan family was in the process of adopting twins when one of the children suddenly fell ill and died — a twist of fate that led the family to adopt Asha instead. Leaving a life of poverty behind, Asha was given a second chance.” Arun Dohle, a reknowned adoption activist is the co-founder of NGO Adoptee Rights Council, formerly known as Against Child Trafficking (ACT). An adoptee himself, he had to fight for an astonishing 17 years to access original records pertaining to his biological mother. Arun, a financial consultant, began his search for his roots in his mid-twenties, but all his requests to obtain his adoption documents were thwarted by the orphanage. After a lot of struggle Arun finally managed to find his biological mother after 17 struggling years!