Patna: Bihar is one of the hotspots of child
marriage in the country and on an average marriages of 67 per
cent of girls below 18 years of age are solemnised every year,
state Minister for Social Welfare Damodar Rawat said.
``Child marriages are a gross injustice to children as it
proves devastating for their life,`` he told a workshop
`Prevention of Child Marriages` jointly organised by Women
Development Corporation of Bihar and UNICEF.
``It is the need of the hour to prevent such marriages,``
he said adding the Prohibition of Child Marriage Act, 2006,
was not being enforced properly.
Rawat said his department had launched `Kanya Vivah
Yojana` to provide financial help to those who marry after the
age of 18 years.
He stressed the need for initiating a multi-sectoral
dialogue on the issue, understanding the prevailing situation,
mechanisms and structures available for the prevention of
child marriage and to develop a plan of action based on the
deliberations from the consultative process.
He also laid emphasis on designing an effective
mechanism for proper implementation of Bihar State Child
Marriage Act and developing a coordination mechanism within
stakeholders for collaboration and partnership to prevent
child marriages in Bihar.
Women Development Corporation Managing Director
N.Vijayalaxmi also spoke.