Chhattisgarh

Chief Minister Launches Campaign to End Child Marriage in Chhattisgarh


RAIPUR, CHHATTISGARH – In a significant move towards social reform, Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Shri Vishnu Deo Sai launched the ‘Bal Vivah Mukt Chhattisgarh Abhiyan’. This campaign, supported by UNICEF and the Women and Child Development Department, aims to end child marriage in Chhattisgarh.
Stating that child marriage is a major obstacle to the development of children, Smt. Lakshmi Rajwade, Minister of Women and Child Development, Chhattisgarh said, “Both boys and girls face challenges in education and skilling, along with health and nutrition status of children. I appeal to people to join the social movement against child marriage to make the state child marriage-free.”


More than 10 lakh people across Chhattisgarh, including 50,000 people, took the pledge led by the Chief Minister in Raipur. All the 146 blocks were connected through video conferencing, and local elected representatives were part of the event. At the district level, the Collectors led the oath-taking.
Ms. Shammi Abidi, Secretary of the Women and Child Development department, Chhattisgarh emphasized that the program to end child marriage will be implemented across the state with the involvement of district officials, police panchayat, and the community. “Today, around 10 lakh women benefiting from the Mahtari Vandan Scheme are connected across the state for listening to the honorable Prime Minister and Chief Minister. I find it the best suitable time for launching this child marriage program in Chhattisgarh,” she added.
Job Zachariah, Chief of UNICEF Chhattisgarh, highlighted the gravity of the issue, stating, “Child marriage is a crime against children & humanity. It increases the risk of maternity & infant deaths, malnutrition, drop-out of girls from school & poverty.”
The campaign aims to end child marriage in Chhattisgarh in the next three years by declaring villages, panchayats, blocks, and districts free from child marriage. The initial focus will be on high prevalence districts. It will be led by sarpanches, urban local bodies, community leaders, voluntary organizations, women’s groups, youth organizations, government departments, and non-governmental organizations with the participation of the people.
In addition, volunteers from Yuvoday, NYKS, NSS, Scouts will be promoted for this campaign where more than 300,000 young people will be capacitated for promoting this social issue.
Social awareness, youth empowerment, and media sensitization will be emphasized, along with raising public awareness about the provisions of the Prohibition of Child Marriage Act. This comprehensive approach aims to create a safer and more equitable future for the children of Chhattisgarh.
For more information, please contact: Abhishek Singh, Specialist SBC, absingh@unicef.org, +91-9934333190

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