Parmukh Sanchalika of Rashtra Sevika Samiti, Smt Pramilatai Medhe, has strongly criticised the proposal of the Law Commission suggesting to reduce the age of marriage from present 21 to 18 years for boys and 16 years for girls. She said the proposal, if accepted, would adversely disturb the social and family system of the country. Talking to a group of women engaged in various social activities in Delhi she said the Indian thinkers divided the life of a person into four categories and the first category suggests brahmacharya up to the age of 25 years, in which the children receive education and training of running a successful social life. If the government permits marriage in the age of 18 years, the important time of getting education and other trainings for a child would go waste in the grahstha ashram adversely affecting the social and family system of the country. Veteran Sangh Pracharak Shri Sohan Singh had inaugurated the workshop.
It is to be noted that the Law Commission headed by Shri AR Lakshmanan in its report, submitted to the Union Law Minister HR Bhardwaj on February 6, has proposed that if man can vote at 18, he can also marry at that age. In its 44-page report, the commission has suggested the reduction of the limit by three years from 21 and declared marriage below 16 as illegal.
The two-day meeting discussed various issues related to women and also unanimously adopted a resolution strongly opposing the proposal of reducing the age of marriage for girls from present 18 to 16. The resolution clearly said a girl cannot bear the burden of becoming a mother in the age of 16 years. ?Various departments of the Government of India including the Health Department have been advertising against marriage in lower age. Not only the girls, the boys of 18 years too cannot bear the burden of running a family. In the age of 18 years a boy is normally in 12th standard and it is the time when he has to decide about his career. If he is engaged in the family at this age, he would hardly be able to have a professional education which is the need of the hour for any student today. Naturally, the marriage in the lower age will affect education, employment, health and the structure of family and the society,? she added.
Talking about the condition of women Sushri Geetatai, Akhil Bharatiya Mahila Samanvya Pramukh, said a woman has become a commodity in today'sage of globalisation and advertisements have made her a commodity to be sold. She stressed the need to curb this tendency. Smt Asha Sharma, Sahsarkaryavahika of the Samiti and Smt. Mridula Sinha, former chairperson of Central Social Welfare Board, also strongly opposed the proposal of reducing the age of marriage. Shri Ram Madhav, former spokesperson of RSS, also spoke about women and the media. Dr Payal Maggo, vice president of Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad, Smt. Neera Shastri and Smt. Vishakha Sailani from BJP, were among the prominent women who were also present at the two-day workshop.