Tuesday, 27 November 2012

Child marriage in Nepal: A religiously promoted practice

Though child marriage in Nepal is in decreasing trend, however, it is still a common practice. Observing the scenario across the globe on child marriage among the TOP HOT SPOTS of marriage identified as per the analysis by ICRW unfortunately Nepal ranks in 9 position with 51.4 percent.  Apart from Nepal that stands on 9th and India in 17th positions rest all nations are Islamic society that suggest Hindu dominated society, India (44.5%) and Nepal (51.4%) and Islamic society are the one who still  continue child marriage practices. 

I found that child marriage practice has been religiously promoted since in the hindu society it has been promoted by the sacred book the Law of Manu (Manusmriti) written in-between 200 BCE and 200 CE by Indian Brahmin sage, Manu in it's Chapter IX verse 94 it says, "A man, aged thirty years, shall marry a maiden of twelve who pleases him, or a man of twenty-four a girl eight years of age; if (the performance of) his duties would (otherwise) be impeded, (he must marry) sooner." This has proven that Hindu society promotes child age marriage thus in India and Nepal child marriage is still prevailing.  

In fact, it is worth to read the article titled "WOMEN IN HINDU SCRIPTURES" about the Eight types of Hindu marriages and Twelve types of son in Hinduism that the author had concluded stating marriages and sons probably explain the development of childmarriages. 

Nepal census 2011 shows an overwhelming progress in literacy, the rate of which rose to 65.9 percent from the 57.4 in 2001. However, the marriage status still paints a gloomy picture. While 48.9 percent of the youths get married between the ages of 15 and 19, 11.5 percent of the people still get married before they reach the age of 14.

As per the UNICEF report 2011 with 51 percent of Nepali girls marrying before 18, Nepal stands second among the top 10 countries in the world in terms of child marriage prevalence, a report says. 

To end social crime against our innocent girls I strongly support the statement of the UN Secretary-­‐General, Ban Ki-­‐moon, “I urge Governments, community and religious leaders, civil society, the private sector, and families–especially men and boys, to promote the rights of girls...Let us be guided by the theme of today’s observance–“my life, my right, end child marriage” –and let us do our part to let girls be girls, not brides.”

1. New Census puts population at 26.49 million accessed from
2. Child Marriage Facts and Figures accessed from ICRW's webpage http://www.icrw.org/child-marriage-facts-and-figures
3. Nepal 2nd in child marriage prevalence: UNICEF accessed from http://www.myrepublica.com/portal/index.php?action=news_details&news_id=33149
4. The Law of Manu's Chapter IX accessed from http://hinduism.about.com/library/weekly/extra/bl-lawsofmanu9.htm
5. WOMEN IN HINDU SCRIPTURES accessed from http://spiritual-minds.com/women/index.htm

No comments:

Post a Comment