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Marriage Age Of Girl

Marriage Age Of Girl

According to the latest data, The Marriage Age Of a Girl is 21 now. 

the total fertility rate in India has already fallen below 2.0. So there’s no need for the Marriage Age Of a Girl to be concerned about it. Their main agenda was to tackle the issues related to motherhood. And to reduce deaths during childbirth. For this, they took feedback from 16 universities. and then it was decided to raise the age for marriage. But obviously, the underlying issue here is child Marriage. The question then arises, Why are some people criticizing this decision? There are mainly 2 points of objection. The first objection was raised by Rajya Sabha MP Priyanka Chaturvedi. Priyanka Chaturvedi says, that there is a need for societal change and legislative interference wouldn’t make any difference. Here, two related things are being compared. For the Marriage Age Of Girl.

The task force on whose recommendation this Bill has been introduced has put forth more recommendations for bringing about societal change. Let’s talk about the second objection. The point of the second objection is Freedom of Choice. CPM politician Sitaram Yechury has said that, when a woman becomes 18 years old, She gets the right to vote. She is treated as an adult, but when it comes to marriage, She will be treated as a juvenile. in the opinion of the people raising this point of objection, the legal age of marriage for both men and women should be 18 years. if we look at the trend worldwide, We can see a similar thing in other countries. Abut the Marriage Age Of Girl.

Here comes a big question. Why wasn’t the marriage age of men reduced to 18 years? So it could be 18 for both? To know the answer to this question, We need to understand the problem of child marriage in the country. According to the estimates of 2019, more than 1.5 million girls in India weren’t 18 years old at the time of their marriage. If we look at the global numbers of child brides, one-third child brides of the total, are from India. Does that mean that so many people are violating the law? To understand this, we need to go into history.

About 100 years ago, in 1917, Some women came together to establish the Women’s Indian Association. An association to raise issues related to women. That was under the British Rule. So the social issues they considered important, were raised in front of the British India Government. But unfortunately, the Britishers were interested in bringing these social reforms. So these women approached the Indian Freedom Fighters. And laid their claims to them. And requesting them to raise the issues relating to women.

In 1929, on Gandhi’s advice, Harbilas Sharda introduced a Bill, to restrain child marriages. under this pressure, the British Indian Parliament finally passed the law child marriage restraint Act, of 1929. But implementing this law did not bring any benefits to the British. So they didn’t try to popularise this act. That’s why there weren’t many changes on the ground. The next major step was taken after the Independence. In 1949, when the minimum marriage age for girls was raised from 14 to 15 years. And then in 1978, it was raised even further from 15 to 18 years old. And in the same year, this age was raised for men from 18 to 21 years old. under this act, the offenses were now cognizable.

Now the authorities, the government, and the police could take action on their own. But even after this, the authorities were hardly concerned. And when child marriage did take place, they believed in letting bygones be bygones. the most important change took place in the year 2006. The prohibition of Child Marriage Act, 2006. This was the first time that child brides were given the option, to have their marriages declared void. But it was subject to a condition. There was a time limit for this rule.

2 years after attaining the marriage age. And this was a big loophole in the law. Child marriages weren’t automatically void. They could be declared void. there were some cases where child marriages were automatically void. mentioned in section 12 of the Act. things were so weird, that till 2017, the age of consent for physical relations for girls, was 18 years. But for a child bride, the same age was 15 years only. So in child marriage, marital rape was legal. And thankfully, our Supreme Court took an action regarding it.

Criminalize marital rape for girls below the age of 18. But the biggest question to arise here is Why isn’t a simple law formed? That if any child below the age of 18 is married off, then it couldn’t be legal under any circumstance. Theoretically, in sections 9,10, and 11 of the 2006 Act, have provisions for levying punishments. But when the Act also contains, that child marriages are voidable, but not automatically void, how would this law work? That’s why even today we can see, that 23% of all marriages are child marriages.

Between 2014 to 2016, a mere 1,785 cases were registered only. And how many of these cases resulted in convictions? only 274 cases. One thing is very clear here, friends, the authorities are taking almost no action to deal with the problem of child marriage. We need to have a true, total, blanket ban on a marriage of a child below the age of 18 years. And friends, this problem isn’t seen only in India. Many countries around the world have the same problem. According to a 2010 UNFPA report, in 158 countries, the legal age for marriage had been set at 18 years. but in 146 of these 158 countries, the law allows the child marriage of girls with the consent of parents. If the parents consent to it, the countries allow child marriages.

So let’s come back to the Bill, raising the marriage age to 21 years. This is a good decision. Because it is fundamentally against child marriages. When the age limit is raised so much, hopefully, it will motivate people to have marriages at that age limit. But at the same time, I’d say that this is an empty promise. if it doesn’t come with the decision that all child marriages are illegal, then this decision would not bring about much change on the ground. Because the existing law relating to it maintains that child marriages are voidable, And not completely void.

then the implementation of the new decision would be almost nil. if it doesn’t come with this step. Overall, changing the mindset of the whole society is extremely difficult. It is a very slow process. in fact, changing one’s mindset is so difficult you would have seen it. Changing one’s habits, letting go of bad habits. First, try to change your mindset.

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