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Uniform Minimum Marriageable Age of Girls Proposed to be 21 Years Regardless of Religion

The minimal marriageable age of women has been proposed to be made religion-neutral at 21 years of age, in response to a Cabinet resolution to herald a brand new regulation quickly that can amend the ‘The Prohibition of Child Marriage Act, 2006’ (PCMA). Top sources mentioned that the federal government is prone to introduce The Prohibition of Child Marriage (Amendment) Bill, 2021, in Parliament on December 20 in the course of the Winter Session.

The Prohibition of Child Marriage (Amendment) Bill, 2021, proposes to amend the PCMA with a purpose to make the age of marriage equal for each men and women at 21 years. At current, the authorized marriage age for men and women is 21 and 18 years, respectively.

“There will be consequential amendments in laws relating to the age of marriage i.e. ‘the Indian Christian Marriage Act, 1872’; ‘The Parsi Marriage and Divorce Act, 1936’; ‘The Muslim Personal Law (Shariat) Application Act, 1937’; ‘The Special Marriage Act, 1954’; ‘The Hindu Marriage Act, 1955’; and ‘The Foreign Marriage Act, 1969’. Also the laws namely ‘The Hindu Minority and Guardianship Act, 1956’; and ‘Hindu Adoptions and Maintenance Act, 1956’ pertain to this context,” a authorities supply mentioned on the event.

Personal legal guidelines of assorted religions pertaining to marriage had their very own requirements up to now – as an example, whereas the Hindu Marriage Act fastened the marriageable age at 18 years for ladies and 21 for males, the non-public regulation for Muslims allowed the wedding of women at 15 years of age. Courts prior to now had mentioned the PCMA Act, 2006, was secular in nature and would prevail upon the non-public regulation.​

Government sources mentioned the modification invoice can be delivered to Parliament quickly and termed it a “historic and momentous decision that has the potential of transforming the lives of women and girls, and is a step forward in the direction of gender equality”.

Sources additionally mentioned the Fundamental Rights and Directive Principles of State Policy, and notably the Right to Equality and Right Against Exploitation beneath the Constitution of India ensures gender equality. “The proposed legislation is a strong measure towards the commitment of the government for the same as it will bring women on equal footing with males,” defined the supply.

The sources additionally added that as India progresses, additional alternatives will open up for ladies to pursue greater schooling and careers. “There are imperatives for lowering Maternal Mortality Rate, Infant Mortality Rate and improvement in nutrition levels as well as an increase in Sex Ratio at Birth. These are the main reasons for effecting the proposed legislation. It will also result in women attaining psychological maturity before marriage, exercising better reproductive rights and better place in life skills, including family planning, use of contraceptives, etc,” the supply mentioned.

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