The Indian government has approved a proposal to raise the legal marriage age for women from 18 to 21, just like it is for men. PM Narendra Modi presented the proposal during the Independence Day celebrations in 2020, and it has now been approved more than a year later. Based on a task force created by the Centre, this idea is based on questions such as maternal age, the imperatives of lowering the MMR (Maternal Mortality Rate), nutritional levels, and other factors.
According to Jaya Jaitly, a former member of the Samata Party, the task force’s recommendation comes ‘after lengthy discussions with professionals, and more significant with young adults, especially young women, because this is a decision that directly affects them’. The committee recommends a comprehensive public awareness campaign to raise social acceptance of the decision to raise the legal marriage age for women.
The organization has also worked to ensure that females have access to universities and schools, including arranging transportation for schools located in remote areas. According to the committee, sex education should be formalized and incorporated into the school curriculum. Among the proposals are training of women at polytechnic colleges, skills and business training, and livelihood enhancement as means to increase the marriageable age.