General

UNO saves minor from getting married

An SSC student was saved from getting married to her teacher following timely intervention in Faridpur’s Nogorkanda on Friday noon.

On information, Upazila Nirbahi Officer and Executive magistrate Jeti Pru went to the girl’s house with members of law enforcement. By then, preparations were underway to marry off the 16-year-old to a 32-year-old man who happens to be a teacher by profession.

A mobile court, led by UNO Pru, stopped the child marriage and fined her father Tk 10,000 while the bridegroom Sazzad Mir was sentenced to six months imprisonment.

The girl’s father also gave an undertaking that he would not marry her off until she reaches adulthood.

Pru said it’s the responsibility of a teacher to neutralize the practice of child marriage, instead he himself tried to marry an underage girl, so as castigation we decided to imprison him.

A mobile court would continue this drive to put an end to this gruesome practice.

A UNICEF report released in October last year noted that despite significant progress in recent years, Bangladesh has the highest prevalence of child marriage in South Asia and ranks among 10 countries in the world with the highest levels.

It called for accelerated action to end child marriage in Bangladesh by 2030.

The report, “Ending Child Marriage: A Profile of Progress in Bangladesh”, said the country will need to put in more efforts to bring change to achieve the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) target to end child marriage by 2030, and the national target to end child marriage by 2041.

Progress must be at least eight times faster than the rate of the past decade to meet the national target, and 17 times faster to meet the SDG target, it said.

While the prevalence of child marriage in Bangladesh has dropped from over 90 percent in 1970, it remains very high: 51 percent women who are currently aged 20-24 were married while they were still children.

As a result, the country is home to 38 million child brides who were married before their 18th birthday, including 13 million who married before the age of 15.

The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic now threatens to roll back progress on ending child marriage.

Source: United News of Bangladesh