Child marriage in India has been performed for centuries, with children married off before their physical and psychological development. Child marriage violates girls’ rights to health, education and chances to make their carrier. It discloses girls to violence throughout their lives, and traps them in a cycle of poverty.
Child brides face huge encounters as a result of being married as infants. Lonely, often with their freedom abridged, girls frequently feel un-confident and are run-down of their fundamental rights to health and education leaving physical, psychological and emotional scars for life.
With support from National institute of Public Cooperation and Child Development the studied objectives are as follows-
- Assess the occurrence and frequency of child marriages, especially in the selected states of Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh.
- Analyze the various economic aspects of society and cultural factors leading to child marriage.
- Analyze legitimate and legal measures against child marriage and their execution.
Neither emotionally nor physically mature to become wives and mothers. Child brides are at a greater risk of experiencing dangerous hitches in pregnancy and childbirth, contracting HIV/AIDS and suffering internal violence.
The child marriage problem remains rooted in complex Indian religious traditions, social practices, economic factors and deeply rooted preconceptions.
The study used minor sources and primary information in order to create arrogance and beliefs regarding child marriage with in society, as well as approaches and practices of key institutional actors as police, government sectors, community workers and panchayat members.
Survey and discussions revealed a multitude of factors that helps to tolerate and even approve the custom of child marriage, despite legal barriers.
Firstly social communities follow traditions of ancestors without even questioning contemporary relevance. Early marriage allows to sacrifice ‘responsibility’ of settling their children.
Secondly, economically weak and large families encourage the practices as it helps them to send off girl child early, while marriage of a boy brings an additional pair of hand to assist in housekeeping.
Third, members of communities practicing child marriage tend to have no formal education. Belief in religious book and the idea that these scriptures have prescription for early marriage, drive families to fulfill this “debt”.
Fourth, early marriage ensures complete utilization of fertility and childbirth capacity.
Lastly, strong caste ties limit the availability of appropriate marital partners. As soon as parents identify a match, they make rush in conducting the marriage.
It also affects society as whole since child marriage supports a cycle of poverty and perpetuates gender discrimination, illiteracy and malnourishment as well as high baby and maternal death rates.
Both girls and boys are affected by child marriage but girls are more affected and with greater intensity. It can be seen across the country but it is much higher in rural than urban areas.
Although child marriages are diminishing, but the rate of decay is slow. Broad, multi-faceted policies are needed to target the multiple aspects of the problem, including deeply rooted traditions and beliefs, the observed low value of girls, lack of education and restricted freedom of movement.
Girls become pregnant before age then they face health weakness issues and their new born babies also become malnutrition. The girls in childhood have less knowledge about family issues like financial conditions of a family so it is advised to not let, the children’s’ and their parents indulge in these child marriages.
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Here are some other major reasons for child marriage
- Limited education opportunities, low quality education, insufficient infrastructure, lack of transport and because of this the concerns of girls safety while going to school significantly contribute to girls out of school hours and thus tend to favor child marriage.
- Although there are widespread awareness about the law of government about the child marriages regardless of this individual person thinks that tradition and norms are stronger over the laws made by the government. On top of this there is limited capacity and willingness, among officials to against the society decisions.
- Girls are often seen as liability rather than a gift of god, with limited economic role. Hence the incentive of dowry perpetuates child marriage. The amount of dowry increases with age and level of education.
- Law enforcement which prohibits child marriage is weaker against society rituals. Limited knowledge of how to apply law and limited understanding of the consequences of the laws.
- The families and girls who might get benefit from social protection programs are not always aware of these programs.
- Drop out of school have a low paid job and limited decision making power at home. A girls with 10 years of education has 6 times lesser chance of being pushed into marriage underage.
If nothing is done regarding reduction in child marriage stats, the global count of women married as children will reach to 1.2 billion by 2050, which means a devastating penalty for the whole world