Is Law Strong Enough over Customs? The Salience of Child Marriage in India: A Critical Study
Keywords:Child marriage, social evil,, tradition,, Law.
In the era of globalization world has been changing rapidly. Along with it, certain social
practices are also changing and some have become obsolete. Child marriage is one of the
retrogressive evil that is still struggling towards good and against evil. A wholly social mindset is
associated with customs and idea of rejecting practice perpetuates hatred. The very idea of law
against child marriage is under strain, owing poor social and political will. This paper will draw
historical roots of child marriage tradition along with issues and challenges that challenges
fundamental rights of the child.
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xvii The Act provides for punishment of up to 15 days in jail or a fine of up to 1000 rupees if the bridegroom is less than 21 years of age. If the bridegroom is over 21 years of age, the Act provides for up to three months' imprisonment and a fine. The parents of the child and the person performing, conducting, or directing the child marriage may also be punished with up to three months' imprisonment and a fine.
xviii Singh, K., & Kapur, D. (2001) “Law, Violence, and the Girl Child.” Health and Human Rights, 5, no.2:8-29.
xix Section 12, “Prohibition of Child Marriage Act,2006.”
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xxi It is also a striking example where grass root worker is raped to retaliate for her intervention in the child marriage. On September 22, 1992 presence of her husband, she was allegedly rape by people who have strong hold over the society. Rape accused has full support of political party and even the district session judge pronounced that upper-caste people cannot rape lower caste women. Today, perhaps Bhawari Devi still has hope that she will get justice. Under such situation it seems that law is futile and it is puppet of those influential people who have strong hold over society. For detail see, http://archive.tehelka.com/story_main34.asp?filename=hub131007A_MIGHTY.asp.
xxii Section 13, “Prohibition of Child Marriage Act,2006”.
xxiii Section 3, “Prohibition of Child Marriage Act,2006”.
xxiv Minimum age of marriage for girl and boy changes from 14 years to 18 years and 18 years to 21 years respectively. Many other changes are discussed in this paper.
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