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Examine the interlinkages of poverty and child marriages in India and also throw light upon the progress made towards ending child, early and forced marriages in the country.

Topic : GS-1: Social empowerment, Salient features of Indian Society, Diversity of India.

GS-2: Welfare schemes for vulnerable sections of the population by the Centre and States and the performance of these schemes; mechanisms, laws, institutions and Bodies constituted for the protection and betterment of these vulnerable sections.

4. Examine the interlinkages of poverty and child marriages in India and also throw light upon the progress made towards ending child, early and forced marriages in the country. (250 words)

Reference: The Hindu 

Why the question:

The article brings to us the fact that the COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent lockdown have proved to be new drivers of child marriages in rural Madhya Pradesh with several reports of such ceremonies from different parts of the State during the ongoing marriage season.

Key Demand of the question:

One must examine the interlinkages of poverty and child marriages in India and also throw light upon the progress made towards ending child, early and forced marriages in the country.

Directive:

Examine – When asked to ‘Examine’, we must look into the topic (content words) in detail, inspect it, investigate it and establish the key facts and issues related to the topic in question. While doing so we should explain why these facts and issues are important and their implications.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Present historical picture of child marriages in the country briefly.

Body:

Discuss how does poverty affect child marriage? – Poverty is one of the main drivers of child marriage, Child brides are more likely to be poor and to remain poor. Where poverty is acute, giving a daughter in marriage allows parents to reduce their expenses: one less person to feed, clothe and educate.

In communities where economic transactions are integral to the marriage process, a dowry or “bride price” is often welcome income for poor families. Families sometimes marry their daughters at a younger age to avoid more expensive dowries which the marriage of older girls often demands.

In the second half of the answer throw light upon the progress made towards ending child, early and forced marriages in the country – discuss the policies of the government in this direction from past to present.

Conclusion:

Conclude by drastic changes in this direction brought by recent policies such as Beti Bachao,Beti Padhao and suggest way forward.