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Move to raise marriage age

india Updated: Jul 28, 2006 15:23 IST

THE WOMEN and Child Development department is contemplating to suggest to raise the   marriageable age limit for women from 18 to 21 years and for men from 21 to 25 years to ensure proper mental, physical and educational growth.

The State Government would forward a proposal to this effect to the Centre if the idea gets approval at the State women panchayat leader meeting convened by the Chief Minister at his residence on July 30, informed Women and Child Development Minister Kusum Mahedele at a press conference on Thursday.

The minister said that the department would review the women’s policy with a view to bringing about changes in the action plan related to women and child development.

The review would be one of the major points of discussion at the women’s panchayat, she added. Ten representatives from each district including people’s representatives from panchayats to MP level and anganwadi workers would participate in the Panchayat.

Women representatives from various sections of the society such as bureaucrats, doctors, lawyers, journalists, social workers, police officials and others will also take part in it.

Principal Secretary of the department Prashant Mehta, who was also present at the press conference, said that measures to make anganwadis more attractive for pregnant and lactating women and children of pre-school age would also be discussed at the meeting.

Making the food, served through anganwadis, tastier and more nutritious , conduct of various ceremonies like `god bharai’ for pregnant women and `anna prashan’ (ceremony related to first intake of solid food by infants) and birthday programmes for the children would also be a part of this plan.

The minister clarified that religion-specific ceremonies would be conducted for people of different sections of society. A special day would be marked for adolescent girls when different competitions and programmes would be organised for them.

Mehta also mentioned the State Government also intends to introduce an insurance plan for girl children, wherein the government would deposit a particular sum at the birth of a girl child that would be available as monthly fixed amount for education of the child, and finally as a one-time sum at the age of 18 for the girl.

Minister of state for women and child development, Meena Singh and Director of women and child development, Kalpana Shrivastava were also present.

Mother-child card to be launched
On July 30, Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan would be formally launching the `Matri-Shishu Raksha Card’ – the mother-child health card - that is a joint venture of the women and child and the health departments of the State. 

The card would have all the details about various schemes for safe motherhood; health plans for the women and children, especially the malnourished children.

The details regarding vaccination, weight of children, nutritious food and care needed for holistic development of children would be provided in the card. The card would also serve as a follow-up chart for the care for both mothers and children.


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