New Delhi: On Tuesday the Prohibition of Child Marriage (Amendment) Bill, 2021, has been passed in Lok Sabha. Union cabinet minister for women and child development Smriti Irani had moved the Prohibition of Child Marriage (Amendment) Bill.
She says that “women equality” in India requires to be seen in the “age of marriage.” “Invoking different marriage laws of different faiths, I rise to introduce the amendment bill,” she adds.
She said the Centre has recommended the Prohibition of Child Marriage (Amendment) Bill, 2021, be sent to a standing committee. She introduced the bill amid uproar by the Opposition MPs. Notably, the bill proposes to raise the legal marriage age for women in India to 21 from 18.
Introducing the amendment bill in the Lower House of Parliament, Irani earlier said, “I would like to present that women equality in our country needs to be seen in (terms of) age of marriage. Invoking different marriage laws of different faiths, I rise to introduce the amendment bill.”
However, opposition leaders, including Congress’ Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, Gaurav Gogoi, AIMIM MP Asaduddin Owaisi, Trinamool Congress’ Saugata Roy raised their objections to the bill.
Chowdhury said the government did not consult any of the stakeholders before introducing the amendment and suggested the bill be sent to the standing committee.
In response, Irani said, “After so many years of Independence, men and women need equal rights in matrimony. This amendment gives equality to men and women in allowing both to marry at 21. Our research shows that 21 lakh child marriages had to be stopped and many underage girls were found pregnant. So you are stopping women from their right to equality.”
Gogoi said, “Even the law commission had objections to the bill so it should be sent to the standing committee.” Roy said he opposed the bill that was introduced in a hurry. “The minorities are totally opposed to the bill and stakeholders need to be consulted,” he added.
Owaisi said, “This is against fundamental rights. An 18-year-old can vote, but cannot get married? What is your ‘Beti Bachao program’ about?”
Stating that this is the second or third time that the government is aggressively bringing in a bill without consulting the opposition, NCP MP Supriya Sule the former is not even sticking to the business advisory council.
As an independent media platform, we do not take advertisements from governments and corporate houses. It is you, our readers, who have supported us on our journey to do honest and unbiased journalism. Please contribute, so that we can continue to do the same in future.