Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said he has asked the police to act against the Assam child marriages menace with a “spirit of zero tolerance”.
So far, more than 1,800 people have been arrested in Assam as part of a massive crackdown on child marriage, according to Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma.
The crackdown began early in the morning and will last for several days.
The Chief Minister stated that he has directed the Assam police to combat the threat in a “zero tolerance” manner.
“State-wide arrests are presently underway against those violating provisions of the Prohibition of Child Marriage Act. 1800 + have arrested so far. I have asked @assampolice to act with a spirit of zero tolerance against the unpardonable and heinous crime on women,” tweeted Mr. Sarma.
State wide arrests are presently underway against those violating provisions of Prohibhiton of Child Marriage Act .
1800 + have been arrested so far.
I have asked @assampolice to act with a spirit of zero tolerance against the unpardonable and heinous crime on women
— Himanta Biswa Sarma (@himantabiswa) February 3, 2023
The Chief Minister announced yesterday that police are investigating over 4,000 cases of child marriage registered across Assam in less than a fortnight and that the crackdown will begin on Friday.
“The Assam government determined to put an end to the Assam child marriages epidemic. So far, @assampolice has registered 4,004 cases across the state, with more police action expected in the coming days. The cases will heard beginning February 3. I request everyone’s cooperation “He tweeted about it.
The Assam cabinet has decided to charge men who marry girls below 14 years of age under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences or POCSO Act, while the men who have married teen girls in the 14-18 years age group will charged under the Prohibition of Child Marriage Act, 2006.
Assam Govt is firm in its resolve to end the menace of child marriage in the state.
So far @assampolice has registered 4,004 cases across the state and more police action is likely in days ahead. Action on the cases will begin starting February 3. I request all to cooperate. pic.twitter.com/JH2GTVLhKJ
— Himanta Biswa Sarma (@himantabiswa) February 2, 2023
The Chief Minister also stated that the “war” on child marriage will “secular,” with no single community being singled out. “Those who facilitate such marriages, such as clerics and priests, will face action as well,” he added.
Assam has a high maternal and infant mortality rate, with child marriage being the leading cause.
“Child marriage is the primary cause of the high infant mortality rate and Maternal Mortality Ratio (MMR). The state has an average of 31% of marriages occurring at the prohibited age” Mr. Sarma stated.