EVILS OF CHILD MARRIAGE
In India, since centuries, the system of child marriage has been prevalent. Customs and traditions had accepted this system. In particular, the backward communities and rigid families of higher castes also followed this system. The system started changing from the seventies of this century.
Advantage of this system was that the age of boys and girls was low at the time of their marriage. So, they could have better adjustment. In particular, the girl could have a better adjustment in the new environment. She could please her husband and in-laws in a pleasing manner.
Gradually the disadvantages of the system became visible. Small girls were exploited by their in-laws. Often they were coerced and ill-behaved. Husbands of these girls often had no voice for which the girls were harassed.
Too young brides become mother of weakling child. This affects the health of the child and mother. Infant mortality was high. Death of women after delivery was also high. So early or child marriages created health hazards also.
Now the government has made laws regarding the minimum age of marriage for boys and girls. These are 21 years and 18 years. It may, ultimately, remove the difficulties associated with child marriages. Besides, there has been a change in social work outlook. Now very few favour child marriage.