Amendment in child marriage act

Ppi June 13, 2010

KARACHI: The Sindh government is set to move a bill to amend the Child Marriage Restraint Act 1929 in the provincial assembly next month by raising the minimum age limit for marriage from 16 to 18 years for both girls and boys, said Provincial Minister for Women Development Tauqeer Fatima Bhutto.

Addressing a panel discussion on gender issues organised by the Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF) on Sunday, she said that the Sindh government had drafted the bill after consulting all the stakeholders, including civil society members. "Once the draft is vetted by the law department, it will be tabled in the Sindh Assembly by July," she said.

She said such laws would also be enacted by the federal government, as it is a national issue.

The amendment is aimed at preventing the common practice of early marriages, said Fatima, adding that another law is being framed for the protection of the rights of female domestic helpers. "The new law would comprise the registration of such workers," she explained.

Explaining the recently passed laws on harassment at workplaces, the minister said that a three-member committee of the concerned organisation would investigate and decide if the accused is guilty of not. Under the new law, the person found guilty of harassment would be sentenced to three years of imprisonment or a fine of Rs500, 000 or both.

Published in the Express Tribune, June, 14th, 2010.


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