Stress on awareness among family members, kin of children

“Imposing law alone cannot prohibit child marriage. Awareness among the public is necessary,” said District Principal Sub-Judge K. Guruviah at the launch of ‘Muttrupulli,’ a campaign against child marriage, here on Monday.

“Child marriage is a cognisable and non-bailable offence. The law gives complete protection, rehabilitation and support to the children through Child Marriage Prohibition Officers,” the judge said.

However, he emphasised that awareness among family members and relatives of the children was very much essential to curb the practise where children are married off at an early age.

The campaign was initiated by Tamil Nadu Child Rights Consortium (TNCRC), a collective of non-governmental organisations based in Virudhunagar and involved in campaigning for child rights.

P. Rajagopal, the State Convenor of TNCRC said, “Child marriage is an act of discrimination against girls, which encourages premature child-bearing. Hence the campaign named ‘Muttrupulli’ (Fullstop) has been launched aiming to end the practise of child marriage, which subjects girl children, especially from economically backward sections, to several abuses,” he said.

Krishnasamy, Income Tax Commissioner of Madurai Zone, expressed his anguish that the impact of child marriage was persistently ignored in rural areas and among the economically weaker section in urban areas. “Children who are married off at an early age are burdened with the responsibilities of young wives and young mothers. It is a shameful practise,” he said.

Judge Guruviah released the campaign material at the event.

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