Q. The women in India face various health-related issues stemming from their social position. Is increasing the age of Marriage for women a paramount solution in this regard? (250 words)
Introduction: The National Family Health Survey (NFHS-5) shows that women in India face various health challenges; for example, 57% of women are anaemic, and the Maternal Mortality Rate (MMR) is still above 100. The age of a girl at the time of Marriage plays an important role in this regard. In India, 23% of marriages involve brides under the age of 18.
Social Reasons for such poor health performance:
Need for a minimum age to be at 21 for girls:
Also, it would be in principle with age-appropriate relationship.
However, changing the age of Marriage is not enough:
Problems with increasing the age of Marriage:
In this context, the government announced setting up a task force to look into the age of a girl entering motherhood to lower maternal mortality rates, improve nutrition levels, and ensure educational and career opportunities for women.
Recommendations of the Jaya Jaitley committee:
Conclusion: Good intent does not guarantee favourable outcomes. Coercive laws without broad societal support often fail to deliver even when aiming for the larger public good. The focus must also be on creating social awareness about women’s sexual and reproductive health, ensuring rights, and ensuring that girls complete their school education and get higher educational opportunities.
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