Girl married to Omani unwilling to return

Efforts are on to get the girl back and for prosecution of the man for violation of Indian law: officials

Published - September 22, 2017 12:03 am IST - HYDERABAD

The city police’s effort to curb marriage of minors picked up pace after the case of a girl’s marriage surfaced last month. The girl in question, who was married off to an Omani national and is now in that country, is in no hurry to desert her husband and return home, it was learnt.

After the girl’s mother lodged a police complaint, efforts began to be made to get her back to India. The girl’s husband, an Omani national aged 65, has contended that the girl was his legitimate wife and not a minor as per the Indian law.

According to the school certificate, the girl’s age was 16 while her passport, prepared after submission of allegedly forged documents, shows her to be 19 years old.

“The girl has already appeared at the Indian mission and has expressed unwillingness to leave. Unlike most other cases of such marriages, where the woman is sold or slaved, the Omani national seems to be pampering her with riches,” a police official said.

“That notwithstanding, our efforts to get the girl back and to get the man prosecuted are on as it is a case of child marriage and a violation of the Indian law,” the official added.

The man, Ahmed Abdullah Amur Al Rahbi, has been declared absconding in the case registered for marrying the 16-year-old. According to the police, he has been summoned by Omani authorities to explain his actions.

The police have already stepped up pressure on the Omani mission in India in the wake of the arrest of five Omanis on Tuesday, including two brokers and three “sheiks” who allegedly wanted to marry minors.

The girl’s case came to light last month after her mother lodged a complaint with the police. The mother had alleged that the marriage was performed without her knowledge.

The police had arrested the girl’s maternal uncle and his wife for facilitating the marriage.

Senior officials, however, confide that the girl’s parents were complicit in facilitating the marriage but had complained when groused for not being adequately compensated for the marriage.

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