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Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Child Marriages Curses Prevented but Not Cured

MALDA, 9 DEC: Child marriage that has been a chronic bane for Malda has caused further frown of state government and the society as in a number of cases child marriages are taking place even after being thwarted by the social welfare department. However, recently a headmaster by his personal initiative thwarted a child marriage and said that he would keep following up the matter.

It may be mentioned that Malda is one of first three districts of the state in terms of child marriage. In a survey conducted by the Burdwan University it was revealed that 42 percent marriages fall under category of child marriages in Malda. However, another survey by National Family and Health Survey (NFHS) revealed that the percentage is 53.

In Malda 24 child marriages were prevented since July, 2012. But out of 24 at least six child brides were married off by their families thereafter.

Underage Bride (file pic)

10 years old Fulera Khantun,  a student of class III of Laxmighat village under Narhatta gram panchayet was married by her family after her marriage was thwarted on 2 November.

Rozina Khutun, daughter of Abdul Khaleq of Manikchak was also married to the grom chosen by her family after her marriage was prevented by child line on 1 November. In both cases FIRs were asked to be lodged by the district social welfare officer Pratyarpan Singha Roy.

Sultan Sheikh’s minor daughter Sima Khatun (13), a in habitant of Nurpur village in Manikchak was also married later though the child help line prevented her marriage on 7 November. Doli Robidas (15) of Narhatta was unfortunate to be married in under age by the family after her marriage was prevented on 3 August.

Lata Burman (15), daughter of Seal Burman of Fulbon village in Habibpur was also married later after her marriage was prevented on 15 August.  Kayema Khatun of Mia Hat in Harischandrapur was also married by her father Sish Muhammed though her marriage was once prevented on 13 November.

Mr Singha Roy said, “Now, we are planning to involve the conscious people of the villages in preventing child marriages so that constant follow up could be maintained. We must prevent such marriages even after child line prevent it once.”

Meanwhile, Joydev Lahiri, headmaster of Dalla CN high school yesterday prevented the marriage of a class V student of his school. The girl Nandita Biswas (13) of Parbatidanga village of Habibpur was pursued by a teacher of the school at the behest of Mr Lahiry and the marriage was prevented. “We would keep monitoring so that the father of the girl Subhas Biswas doesn’t arrange the marriage of the girl again,” Mr Lahiri said.

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