With so many steps and programmes taken by the centre and state government for the empowerment of women seems like do not affect the system. Recently the Child Welfare Committee (CWC) along with police hinders a child marriage at Lokeswar Temple in Pallahat.
The police reached the spot immediately after getting the tip and rescued the minor girl and the boy. The minor girl belongs to Dimiripatna village under Nayagarh and the 25-year-old boy from Lokeswarpur village in Khurda district. Apparently, they met through Facebook and then decided to get married at Lokeswar temple at Pallahat in Khurda district. The girls’ uncle informed the Childline officials after knowing the marriage on the helpline number. The officials, along with District Child Protection Officer (DCPO), Child Development Project Officer (CDPO) and police hurried to the Lokeswar temple and stopped the marriage. After interrogation, the girl said that she wasn’t a minor but her parent’s claims that she was below 18 year age. To prove her age, her parents are asked to submit her birth certificate. Till now the girl will be staying at a shelter home.
Recently Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his Independence speech, stated that the legal age for the marriage to be considered to increase. According to some reports increasing the marriage age of women would have numerous benefits on both social and economic fronts including lowering Maternal Mortality Ratio (MMR), improvement of nutrition levels and more opportunities for women to seek higher education. But the question still prevails that when the increasing number of child marriage will be stopped.
Till now also in some villages in Odisha child marriages are conducted but are not reported to the Child Welfare Organisation or the police. According to the reports, 35 per cent of females in India are married before the age of 21 years, and the situation is even worse in other states. Even according to the UNICEF report, 650 million women today were married before the age of 18. Uttar Pradesh has the highest number of child brides following by Bihar, West Bengal, Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra.
The problem behind the child marriage isn’t the law; even the increasing age limit of women or men won’t help to solve this problem. Raising the legal age of marriage represents a lack of knowledge of the reasons for the low period of marriage for women in India, which have concise to do with the law.
The real factor lies because of the long tenacious cultural factors and the education system in India. People here, especially the poor Indian family’s attempts to reduce the cost by marrying their daughters or don’t educate them enough to make their own decision and parents prefer to invest more on their sons.
The Government should come up with a long-term solution which can at least help to reduce the cases of child marriage and a little bit strict system in India.
Article Written by Dikhya Mohanty
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