Odisha Temples Barred From Solemnising Child Marriages

Bhubaneswar: The Odisha government has asked temples not to solemnise child marriages on their premises.

The Law Department has asked the Endowments Commission to issue an advisory in this regard to shrines under its administrative jurisdiction.

According to the advisory issued on Monday, it’s now mandatory for temples to display a notice at the entry point, saying “marriage before legal age is punishable and no child marriage is solemnised here”.

Besides, the temple authorities have to verify age-related documents of both the bride and groom before allowing a wedding on their premises.

For shrines not under the control of the Endowments Commission, the Collectors will ensure that similar steps are followed in the, Also, temple priests will be sensitised about the bad effects of child marriages.

Incidentally, the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) had reported around 50% rise in child marriage cases in 2020 as compared to 2019.

According to the NCRB, 785 child marriage cases were reported last year. The number of cases registered was highest in Karnataka at 184, followed by Assam (138), West Bengal (98), Tamil Nadu (77) and Telangana (62)..

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