Published:  12:16 AM, 20 May 2017

Child Marriage Restraint Act backs child marriage

Activists demand cancellation of the special provision

Child Marriage Restraint Act backs child marriage Samajtantrik Mohila Forum protests the special provision of Child Marriage Restraint Act 2017 yesterday. They formed a human chain in front of Jatiya Press Club and demanded cancellation of the provision. Photo: AA

Special provision in 'Child Marriage Restraint Act 2017' actually encourages child marriages, said columnist Abul Maksud. He opined: "The special provision is not explained and anyone can orchestrate a special situation." The Act, according to him, legalizes the act of child marriages in Bangladesh. The columnist made the assertion at a women rally yesterday. Samajtantrik Mohila Forum organized the demonstration at Jatiya Press Club.   
The Child Marriage Restraint Act 2017 was passed in the JS in February last which states that underage females may be married off under "special contexts" as long as it is conducted with the permission of her parents or guardians in conjunction with a magistrate.

Such a marriage will no longer be considered an offence. Barrister Sara Hossain observed although the government claiming to implement all international laws, the reality contrasts. Claiming the Act "fails in clarifying special issues and irrelevant", she said that the High Court recently questioned about it.    Bangladesher Samajta-ntrik Dal (BSD) general secretary Khalequzzaman said: "The reality and the Act sharply contrast. The Act will push the country as well as the nation into darkness."

He also stated: "The Act is evidential enough that the government compromised with Hefazat-e-Islam." Jahangirnagar Unive-rsity Professor Naseem Akhter Hussain opined the Act legalizes the child marriage instead of preventing it. Supreme Court lawer Joytirmoy Barua, Dr Manisha Chakrabarti, Mahila Forum organizing secretary Dilruba Nuri, Shampa Basu, Laxmi Chakrabarti and Imran Habib spoke at the program, among others.    

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