What’s the fuss about raising the age of marriage for females in India?

What’s the fuss about raising the age of marriage for females in India?

What’s the fuss about raising the age of marriage for females in India?_ ichhori.com



In recent events, the Government of India has proposed to raise the age of marriage for females in India from 18 to 21, equal to the age of men, through a bill presented in the Lok Sabha on December 21, 2021. Let us understand what exactly the bill is and why it is passed.


● The bill contains many sections in it such as Prohibition of Child Marriage Act, 2006; The Special Marriage Act and the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955; the Muslim Personal Law Application Act; the Indian Christian Marriage Act; the Parsi Marriage and Divorce Act and the Foreign Marriage Act. 
● The objective of the bill is to contribute to women empowerment in a holistic manner, which includes gender equality, increasing the female labor force participation and making them self reliant.
● According to UNICEF, approximately 1.5 millions get married under the age of 18 years in India every year.
● According to the National Family Health Survey (2019-2021), one fourth of the women aged between 20-24 years were married before turning 18 years old.
● According to the world bank, only one out of five women aged 15 years and above was a part of the labor force, much lower than the global average of close to 50 percent.


Controversies that came with this motion:


At first, the age was set to 15 years before reaching 18 years and now 21 years. Many of you must be wondering why they keep on changing the age? The Government of India noticed that many young, talented girls were forced to drop out of their education just for the sake of marriage and increasing the age would provide them with enough time to pursue their education. And also because Modi once said ,”whenever women have been given an opportunity, they have made India proud and strengthened the country.” also, the government of india wanted to provide equal opportunities for employment to women”

Another reason for pushing the age limit was to prevent the rise of pregnancies in teenagers which further increase the possibility of high blood pressure, anemia and such other health complications in the mother, which can even lead to her death. Thus, if the age limit is raised, then maternal mortality can be decreased.

Well, if you were to be forced into a huge responsibility at an early age, would you not be depressed and stressed? The same happened with a lot of girls who married at an early age. Thus, the Government of India believed that even if a minor percentage of mental health cases decreases then it would be great.


But when we look at what the opposition party has to say, they argue that child marriage in india has been continuing on for ages in spite of many laws and acts. Rather, the cases of child marriage in india has increased tremendously after the covid-19 outbreak. So the problem lies as to how to bring about this valuable change in people and society, and how to implement this law.

Another point addressed by the opponents is that many families in India control the life of their children, especially girls. To escape that trauma, many girls run away with their choice of a partner as soon as they turn 18, which is not possible now as they have to wait for three more years. That means, three more years of trauma and family problems! And, adding salt to the wound, the family could misuse this period to do god knows what.


Activist’s Point of View:

Has there been any moment when the social activists, especially those who work for the betterment of women, didn’t say anything whenever any news occurred related to women?

This bill caused a huge fuss between the people of India. The women’s group and right activists very much question this action of the Government of India as to what was the need for it and how it will manage to implement it. According to them, when all the previous laws were badly violated, then how will this law work? They said that if the government brought about changes in terms of increasing the income as well as education of women, it would be more effective in the way that women would not be married at an early age. 


Even according to Oxfam India’s data, it is shown that investments done in the education sector and improving incomes for households could go much further in achieving the desired results, like more participation of women in the market and having financial independence.  

The feminists say that when a girl will get good education, it will result in a change in their mindset  and they would be willing to delay their marriages. It’s for those who want to get away from their family but instead of studying and making a career, they run away and get married.

Similarly, they point out if the matter is about the health of young mothers, it is mainly due to poverty and neglecting healthcare than the legal age. 



Anyways, respecting women should be a major and primary concern in the world rather than a marriage age and setting a “global trend”. None of the above mentioned things would matter if the people of this world learn to respect a woman. Imagine a world with a very low crime rate in regards to women, imagine a woman walking freely in the twilight rather than being happy or sad with a little decision of the government for the “benefit” of their good being.

And this respect will come by increasing awareness in every little corner of India; by showing to the world what women are capable of, if they are given a chance, if they are provided a good education.

So, this was all the concoction regarding raising the marrying age of women in India.

 Let us only hope that the government is successful in implementing this bill in the correct way and people understand the real meaning behind all this. That is, providing both men and women with equal opportunities. 





Reference link - https://www.theleaflet.in/minimum-legal-age-of-marriage-for-women-being-raised-to-21-years-pros-and-cons/


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