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Prevent child marriages on Akshaya Tritiya, says NCPCR

New Delhi: The National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) has written to all chief secretaries including Delhi to take all possible measures to stop child marriages on Akshaya Tritiya.

A letter which was written by NCPCR member Yashwant Jain said that the commission has observed that Akshaya Tritiya or Akha Teej is being celebrated in various parts of India as a day of good fortune to establish new businesses, new partnerships and new marriages. "Solemnization of child marriages and mass marriages on a large scale has been common practice in past years. Despite the fact that laws are in place, child marriages are being solemnized which is a matter of concern. This year Akshaya Tritiya or Akha Teej will be celebrated on 7 May 2019," reads the letter.

It further said, "You must be aware that the PCMA 2006 seeks to prevent child marriages by making certain actions punishable and by appointing certain authorities responsible for the prevention and prohibition of child marriages. These persons are responsible for ensuring that the law is implemented. It is also the responsibility to the community to make use of the law." It further added that CMPOs are to be appointed in every state to prevent child marriages, ensure the protection of the victims as well as prosecution of the offenders.

The letter revealed that the Commission is an apex body in the field of Child Rights and in accordance with its functions as mentioned in Section 13 (1) (a) of the CPCR Act 2005 requests you to direct all District Magistrates or Collectors, Deputy Inspectors General or Superintendents of Police, Sarpanches, Civil Society Organizations, Child Marriage Prevention Officers and Child Welfare Committee in the states/ union territories to take proactive steps and preventive measures to stop child marriages. The State Women Commissions and State Commission for Protection of Child Rights (SCPCRs) may also be requested to remain vigilant to prevent child marriages.

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