President awards girls for opposing child marriage

Fifteen-year-old Sangita Bauri never feared her parents and society when she opposed her forcible marriage in a remote village in West Bengal but she trembled when she was honoured here by President Pratibha Patil for her feat.

Last Updated: Dec 07, 2011, 15:40 PM IST

New Delhi: Fifteen-year-old Sangita Bauri
never feared her parents and society when she opposed her
forcible marriage in a remote village in West Bengal but she
trembled when she was honoured here by President Pratibha
Patil for her feat.

Bauri along with two other young girls - Bina Kalindi
and Mukti Majhi - met Patil on Wednesday after they were called by the
President hearing the tale of their daunting courage and
refusing child marriage in their village in West Bengal`s
Purulia.

"I never feared when I said no to my marriage sometime
back. I went against everyone...my parents, elders and others
in my village...they had to relent. But when I was told I
would be meeting the President and she will honour me, I went
cold," Bauri said here after she was felicitated by Patil
with a cash reward of Rs 10,000.

Bauri, who was accompanied by her father Bibuthi for
the meet, was visibly happy but tensed when she received the
cash packet from Patil.

"I am very happy to see what these three girls have
done to oppose a social evil like child marriage. These young
school-going girls will be a source of inspiration for many
others like them in an around their village," Patil said as
she met the three girls and their parents at the Rashtrapati
Bhavan.

PTI