Blind beliefs makes fight against child marriage difficult

Blind beliefs makes fight against child marriage difficult

Underaged marriages high among Upparas, Soligas in Ch'nagar

Despite making all efforts to check the incidences of child marriages, deep rooted beliefs among the people, irrespective of class, was coming in way of fighting the social malady.

The matter was discussed at length during the divisional meeting of the Women and Child Development department, presided by minister Umashree here on Friday.

Deputy Director of Women and Child Development, Chamarajanagar, Bhaskar brought it to the notice of the minister that child marriages were rampant among Uppara and Soliga (tribals) communities in the district. 

Among Uppara community, boys and girls were married in the age group of 14 years to 15 years.  In the case of Soligas, the boys and girls were left in the forest for 15 days, and on their return, they were married off. 

Outlining the initiatives taken by the department in curbing the under-aged marriages, the official said that eight marriages had been stopped this year, while 38 marriages were prevented last year.

Gulf mania

Dakshina Kannada district, which known have high literacy rates, child marriage still remains a bane. 

The minister too was taken aback to learn that child marriages were prevalent in Dakshina Kannada too, and wanted to know the reasons behind the same. Deputy Director Gertrude Veigas explained that most parents were lured by bridegrooms from the coastal district settled in Gulf nations. Whenever a marriage proposal came from the Gulf, the parents of minor girls were known to give their consent without a second thought. However, the department has succeeded in stopping 17 child marriages, the officer claimed.