Government measures undertaken so far to curb Child Marriages in India
The Child Marriage Restraint Act, 1929.
The object is to eliminate the special evil which had the potentialities of dangers to the life and health of a female child, who could not withstand the stress and strains of married life and to avoid early deaths of such minor mothers.
It extends to the whole of India except the State of Jammu and Kashmir and it applies also to all citizens of India within and beyond India.
Prohibition of Child Marriage Act, 2006
This Act replaced the Child Marriage Restraint Act, 1929 which was enacted during the British era.
It defines a child to mean a male below 21 years and female below 18 years.
“Minor” is defined as a person who has not attained the age of majority as per the Majority Act.
It envisages preventing child marriage with punishments of rigorous imprisonment for two years and/ or fine of Rs. 1 lakh.
The Act also provides for the appointment of Child Marriage Prohibition Officer whose duties are to prevent child marriages and spread awareness regarding the same.
State Governments are requested to take special initiative to delay marriage by coordinated efforts on Akha Teejthe traditional day for such marriages;
Advertisements in the press and electronic media educating peoples about the issue of Child Marriage etc are also being taken up.
Platforms such as the International Womens Day and the National Girl Child Day are used to create awareness on issues related to women and to bring to the centre stage issues such as child marriage.
Through the Sabla programme of Women and Child Ministry, adolescent girls in the age group of 11 to 18 years are imparted training with regard to legal rights of women which also includes the Prohibition of Child Marriage Act, 2006.