Child marriage: Kailash Satyarthi’s Foundation, & Sahyog Care pledge to curb decade-old menace

In collaboration with Kailash Satyarthi Children’s Foundation (KSCF), SAHYOG CARE FOR YOU, a registered voluntary NGO, carried out a massive torchlight march in different parts of Delhi to spread awareness against the decade-old evil act of ‘Child Marriage.’

Notably, Nobel Peace Laureate and child rights activist Kailash Satyarthi has launched a nationwide campaign called ‘Child Marriage Free India to end the social evil of child marriage which is still pertaining in our society. While the popular opinion in society would be the nation has moved on from such a decade-old devil act, the stats and figures show the reality otherwise.

The 2011 census reported over 12 million child marriages in the country, which is also supported by a National Family Health Survey study. Out of 12 million child marriages, 5.2 million were girls. According to NFHS, 23.3 per cent of women between the ages of 20 to 24 are married before turning 18.

While speaking to The Quotes, social activist and former advisor of the child rights commission, Jyoti Rathi, under whose leadership the campaign took a larger shape and the march on Sunday was held, said, “Its unacceptable to us that such issue is still prevailing in our society. Under the guidance of Noble Laurette Kailash Satyarthi, sir, we are confident that we will be able to curb the menace of child marriage in our society. The campaign aims to cover districts and blocks and raise public awareness through torchlight procession and lighting lamps,” added a social activist.

Child Marriage Free India has set three objectives for realising an end to the practice of child marriage.

1) To ensure the strict implementation of the laws on the legal age of marriage and those protecting children against abuse.

2) To enhance women and children’s social and economic participation and ensure their empowerment by giving them free education until they are 18.

3) To provide safety to children against sexual exploitation.

Meanwhile, Noble Laurette Kailash Satyarthi lauded the government’s efforts by backing the idea of increasing the age of marriage for girls from 18 to 21. “Child marriage violates human rights and dignity, which unfortunately still has social acceptance. This social evil propels an unending list of crimes against children, especially against our daughters. I support the Government of India’s proposal to increase the marriageable age of girls from 18 to 21,” Mr Satyarthi said.

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