3,000 men to be arrested in next 10 days for child marriage: Assam CM Sarma | Latest News India - Hindustan Times
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3,000 men to be arrested in next 10 days for child marriage: Assam CM Sarma

ByBiswa Kalyan Purkayastha
Sep 10, 2023 08:36 PM IST

Assam chief minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said 5,000 people were arrested for child marriage but this campaign was paused due to the G20 Summit

SILCHAR: As the G20 Summit wrapped up in New Delhi, Assam chief minister Himanta Biswa Sarma on Sunday announced in Guwahati that the government will resume its campaign against child marriage in the state and arrest about 2-3,000 men over the next 10 days for violations.

Assam chief minister Himanta Biswa Sarma flags off mobile forensic laboratories at State Secretariat complex, in Guwahati, Thursday, Aug. 31, 2023. (PTI Photo)(PTI08_31_2023_000145B) (PTI)
Assam chief minister Himanta Biswa Sarma flags off mobile forensic laboratories at State Secretariat complex, in Guwahati, Thursday, Aug. 31, 2023. (PTI Photo)(PTI08_31_2023_000145B) (PTI)

“Six months back, I arrested 5,000 people for child marriage in Assam. I was waiting for the G20 to end. Now in the next 10 days, I will arrest 2,000-3,000 men for child marriage. Because we have to eradicate it (child marriage). There is a law that this should not happen. And if it continues to happen, daughters from a particular group will never progress. They will keep on getting exploited.,” Sarma said in his address at the concluding session of the national executive meeting of the women’s wing of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).

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Sarma, who also referred to his plan to bring a law to end polygamy in the state by the end of this year, emphasised that this wasn’t being anti-Muslim as some people accused them. “But I believe that by ending (triple) talaq, child marriage, and polygamy, the amount of work that we are doing for the Muslims, no Congress government has done before had done it before”.

To be sure, 2011 census data shows that polygamy among men is not a phenomenon which is restricted to Muslims alone, and that the number of currently married women is greater than currently married men among all religious groups.

A committee headed by retired Guwahati high court judge Rumi Phukan set up in May to examine the state legislature’s competence to enact a law to outlaw polygamy submitted its report last week. Sarma told reporters on September 3 that the committee confirmed that the state was competent to consider the bill, which after its passage by the assembly, would have to go to the President, and not the governor, for assent.

Sarma maintained that many Islamic countries have ended “bad practices” but when “our country takes any such step, Congress leaders Rahul and Sonia Gandhi call it a step against the minority”.

He asserted all these measures are to stop the exploitation of women, especially of a ‘category’ in which it is not unusual for girls to be married off at nine years, and who become mothers by 12 years.

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