Council meeting: Agreed age for puberty is 15, says CII

Published: May 22, 2014
CII Chairman Maulana Muhammad Khan Shirani. PHOTO: PID

CII Chairman Maulana Muhammad Khan Shirani. PHOTO: PID


The Council of Islamic Ideology reiterated on Wednesday that early age is a relative term, while the age considered suitable for marriage is a biological issue for which puberty is a pre-condition.

Speaking on the second day of the CII meeting, Maulana Muhammad Khan Shirani observed that a girl reaches puberty at the age of nine while boys reach puberty at 12. Nonetheless, the agreed age for puberty is 15.

Regarding the Sindh Assembly’s resolution he said he would guide the lawmakers about the right path. The Sindh Assembly last month unanimously passed a law declaring marriage below the age of 18 years punishable by law and a violation of the rights of children.

Briefing the media at the CII headquarters, Maulana Shirani said that the council has put forward several amendments in the Muslim Family Ordinance 1961 and 1929 Act that deal with child marriage.

He clarified that the previous law of seeking permission for second marriage was contrary to the teachings of Islam and therefore such pre-conditions should be lifted.

Published in The Express Tribune, May 22nd, 2014.

Facebook Conversations

Reader Comments (50)

  • In-Sane
    May 22, 2014 - 8:41AM

    Why listen to what he says? He is not a doctor


  • Ghostrider
    May 22, 2014 - 8:48AM

    ascertaining puberty age is more important than poverty, illiteracy and health issues? I pity these old men who still live in stone age and are bent to take us there.


  • Naseer Hussain
    May 22, 2014 - 8:58AM

    Would they also get the right to vote?


  • Rajesh
    May 22, 2014 - 9:25AM

    While Indian priorities are about Infrastructure, development, power, space tecnology, IT etc pakistanis headline are about Puberty age of girls. OMG!!!
    Ask them to concentrate their efforts in more usefull things for society.


  • Salman
    May 22, 2014 - 9:33AM

    Sick people!


  • Rocketter
    May 22, 2014 - 9:35AM

    Yes, Molana is right in saying that the age considered suitable for marriage is a biological issue for which puberty is a pre-condition. That is what Islam says. Nonetheless liberals will criticize this statement also coz they follow their own wimps and desires and not the Creators will.


  • Junaid
    May 22, 2014 - 9:40AM

    This isn’t the 1st Century AD – nor is it the more modern Medieval Era. Hope the government rejects their proposal.


  • Faizan
    May 22, 2014 - 9:47AM

    “the previous law of seeking permission for second marriage was contrary to the teachings of Islam”

    Because a woman does not have a claim over her life partner and it’s the man’s decision to choose whether she must share him or keep him all to herself right? Stone age get ready! We are coming!!


  • jk
    May 22, 2014 - 9:49AM

    agreed age??? whom did they agreed with and why did he agreed for 15 years when he himself finds nine the age of puberty.


  • Usman Aziz
    May 22, 2014 - 9:49AM

    It is quite disputed statement by CII , so it should promote only what is agreed by all and have no objection by Islamic scholars.


  • Truth seeker
    May 22, 2014 - 9:51AM

    please open your mouth if you know any thing about Islam. Islam came not for the 1st Century AD. It came till the end of time. It is your choice to follow it or reject it or make fun of it. But one day there will be accountability Be ready!.


  • Mard-e-Haq
    May 22, 2014 - 9:57AM

    Pakistan is an Islamic nation. Therefore, it is natural for the people to take the Islamic view.


  • khan
    May 22, 2014 - 9:58AM

    in most of western liberal countries the age of marriage allowed is 16 years.
    USA its 16-18 depending upon states.
    lastly, these just opinions.Recommend

  • Doctor
    May 22, 2014 - 10:01AM

    If a girl has 10 Boyfriends by the time she is 9 in West is considered perfectly ok but if she is married upon reaching puberty, with the consent of parents it’s considered bad…..;
    Shame Shame Shame


  • May 22, 2014 - 10:10AM

    Kudos to the Sindh Assembly for doing taking the right step.

    I went to the Council of Islamic Ideology’s website – interesting read. The question on what gives this council a monopoly on the truth or right interpretation of the faith comes to mind.

    Islam is a faith of intellect and tolerance — meaning use logic and the grey matter between one’s ears. This council’s interpretation and conclusions should be given the weight it deserves …. its just nonsensical noise.

    How can any thinking person advocate child marriage (more like child servitude). Women are not chattel – they are our better half and should be treated as such. The fact that folks misinterpret religion to perpetuate their ignorant view of what is considered a marriage is both offensive and infuriating …. all in the name of religion.


  • molana duality
    May 22, 2014 - 10:13AM

    I like the last para, where to go molana!Recommend

  • Raj - USA
    May 22, 2014 - 10:14AM

    I am waiting for Mubashir Luqman inviting these mullas and having a TV debate on these very important issues !!!!!!!!!!


  • Timorlane
    May 22, 2014 - 10:37AM

    publicity hunger grows everyday


  • Proud Apostate
    May 22, 2014 - 10:42AM

    @Doctor: Boyfriends at the age of 9? Not sure what world you are living in. Hope you aren’t a real doctor.


  • Pakistani
    May 22, 2014 - 10:49AM

    Don’t they have anything better to do????


  • SM
    May 22, 2014 - 11:02AM

    Perv of the highest order.
    Jeeay Sindh assembly for passing this wise and humane law.


  • Cobra Commander
    May 22, 2014 - 11:05AM

    @Doctor: What a shameful statement. 10 boy friends by the age of nine…. You just brushed all the western women as of loose character at a very young age. There is no need of vile and idiotic comments like ones from so called Doctor.


  • Gratgy
    May 22, 2014 - 11:10AM

    If a girl has 10 Boyfriends by the time she is 9 in West is considered perfectly ok

    Having boyfriends, and having sex with boyfriends are not the same. Underage sex before a girl reaches puberty is illegal in the west.


  • Muslim Fundamentalist
    May 22, 2014 - 11:34AM

    If marriage before 18 is punishable, so should be extramarital sex and illegal relationships.


  • Peshawari
    May 22, 2014 - 11:34AM

    I am clueless that these religious leaders are so concerned about issues of child marriages, second marriages while they showing no concern on issues of interfaith harmony, peaceful coexistence, protection of minorities. and if they really do understand biology, then they should make polio and other vaccines mandatory for children. They should also be vocal on issues of education and safety of children in society.


  • Gurion
    May 22, 2014 - 12:10PM


    This isn’t the 1st Century AD – nor is
    it the more modern Medieval Era. Hope
    the government rejects their proposal.

    In fact, it’s exactly 625 AD.


  • SamSal
    May 22, 2014 - 12:22PM

    Someone please tell this baba ji that ‘puberty’ is not the only thing required for marriage. There’s a thing called ‘maturity’ (physical, mental, emotional and financial). Then there’s a thing called ‘stability’ (physical, mental, emotional and financial). And then there are things like: ‘willingness’, ‘consent’, etc.


  • The One
    May 22, 2014 - 12:39PM

    Just because a girl attains maturity that does not mean her body is ready to have children. Just go have a look at young girls in Sub Saharan African countries who are married off at puberty. So many of these girls end up with obstetric fistulas because of underdeveloped pelvises leaving holes in their bladder and stillborn children. They leave behind a constant stream of urine and their ‘husbands’ will gladly rid of them for being unclean.

    On top of that Pakistanis have no concept of giving nutrition to a pregnant women. They are expected to work in the fields and cook, clean and feed the rest of the family without anyone caring for their health. Younger bodies are too malnutritioned to handle this stress.

    I know someone who was married very very young and they finally had a child after so many stillbirths and it only happened after the both of them reached their 20s. They’re too uneducated to recognize that the sudden miracle was only because the husband found a job where he could feed his wife fruits and milk to his hearts content (My mother demanded he do this) and the fact that the wife reached a point where her body had developed enough to carry a child to full term.


  • Arsha
    May 22, 2014 - 12:40PM

    Never seen 9 year old girls having 10 boyfriends in west. Most families allow their daughters to date only after 13-14.
    Regardless of that dating and marriage are completely different things. A girl with mental maturity of a child is not crushed under the burden of responsibility , expectations, made vulnerable to abuse, and made devoid of opportunities to build her own individuality or career


  • Rex Minor
    May 22, 2014 - 12:53PM

    The CII is well advised to keep out of matters which must be regulated by medical science!

    Rex Minor


  • EnlightenedModeration.
    May 22, 2014 - 1:15PM

    A story of Modern world

    *”Father of new mother, 12, says he is proud after she and boyfriend, 13, become Britain’s youngest parents”*


  • jun
    May 22, 2014 - 2:41PM

    in many European countries , age of mutual consent is 15 .


  • Parvez
    May 22, 2014 - 2:59PM

    ….and religion is being discredited by its own hand.


  • Shakir Lakhani
    May 22, 2014 - 3:47PM

    Not long ago, it was common for girls to be married immediately after attaining puberty (9 years). Those were the days when women would often die during pregnancy. The British succeeded in preventing marriage of under-age girls and boys, and the survival rates among pregnant women increased. However, even in many localities in Karachi (like Orangi Town, for instance), girls are married off as soon as they attain puberty.


  • Irfan Achakzai
    May 22, 2014 - 4:44PM


    Should we then marry girls off as soon as they have puberty?


  • Irfan Achakzai
    May 22, 2014 - 4:49PM

    You are right. The Maulana here wants it be at age 9.


  • Moiz Omar
    May 22, 2014 - 5:08PM

    10 boyfriends by the age of 9? Not even in the most liberal areas of the West is that considered OK.


  • Moiz Omar
    May 22, 2014 - 5:13PM

    @Muslim Fundamentalist:
    Personally I also feel extra martial sex is wrong but I don’t feel it should be illegal. That should be left between the spouses themselves. If by “illegal relationships” you mean dating, there is a huge difference between dating and marriage.


  • Moiz Omar
    May 22, 2014 - 5:15PM

    That is too young. It should be at least 18.


  • Mj
    May 22, 2014 - 6:47PM

    “A story of Modern world
    ”Father of new mother, 12, says he is proud after she and boyfriend, 13, become Britain’s youngest parents”

    Still better than a 9 year old made to consummate marriage with a man six times her senior and setting a terrible precedent for centuries to come.


  • Ali Tanoli
    May 22, 2014 - 7:31PM

    what a shame is that most of peoples dont understand the statement of maulana shirani
    it does not means u merry the girls on fifteen. shadis are personal matters….


  • unbelievable
    May 23, 2014 - 2:09AM

    @Doctor: It’s apparent you don’t travel much – and certainly don’t know anybody in the “West” that has daughters.


  • sab
    May 23, 2014 - 2:45AM

    The best way to reject such sick minded mullahs is to give education to our girls and empower them. These mullahs only seems to have things like sex and zina on their minds becoz they r always pretending to be oh so pure.Free medication for them plzzzz


  • someone
    May 23, 2014 - 5:29AM

    @Rex Minor:
    Probably the dictation came from house of Sauds.


  • Ahmed
    May 23, 2014 - 8:29AM

    Please read history. This was happening in the USA up untill the 19th century. Do not comment without medical, historical or psychological reasons. I would love to hear one of each of these from you.


  • observer
    May 23, 2014 - 11:08AM

    Only in Pakistan do old old old men get to decide about young girls (officially) What an amazing nation. What next ?.


  • Mazhar
    May 23, 2014 - 12:43PM

    Dear All,
    Marriage is not only related to puberty. It is about taking responsibility. That is why is western societies, you can go on date at 15, but marry after 18. The girls needs to finish her studies and be ready/matured enough to take household responsibility. Olden times, there was no structured education system like today, and families were joint. With proper education system and nuclear families, completing education and being matured to take household responsibility is very important.


  • Vikram
    May 23, 2014 - 12:49PM

    Having 10 Boyfriends at the age of 9 is execration to the extreme, Marriage is not only about the puberty or consent of parents, it has physiological impact as child she will be deprived of Education, love and care of her parent and go to In-laws place where she will not be treated as per her age, also its about child bearing as a women, does attaining puberty means she is ready for motherhood. Considering 100 other aspects we need to take caution here it’s the matter of life or death for a Child.


  • Mj
    May 23, 2014 - 7:41PM

    “Please read history. This was happening in the USA up untill the 19th century.”

    Child marriages were never the norm in the US with most marriages taking place at adolescence, around 15-20. There are occurrences of child marriages among European royalty and nobility and that practice was equally abhorrent.

    “Do not comment without medical, historical or psychological reasons. I would love to hear one of each of these from you.”

    I think that you’re the one who’s disregarding the harmful effects of marriage during childhood, not me.

    “The risk of maternal mortality is highest for adolescent girls under 15 years old and complications in pregnancy and childbirth are the leading cause of death among adolescent girls in most developing countries.” – WHO

    “Girls younger than 15 are five times more likely to die during child birth or pregnancy than older women. Pregnancy-related deaths are the leading cause of mortality for girls aged 15 to 19 worldwide.”

    Historical reasons do not matter as we’re living in 21st century. We don’t need to follow the past behaviors of people who did not know any better. I recommend that you read this article.


  • a
    May 24, 2014 - 1:40AM

    Almost everyone here is confusing ‘must’ with ‘should’. What Mawlana said is that the minimum age MUST be atleast 15 which agreed upon. However, the “should” parents or the boy/girl can decide when they “should” get married. It depends upon several factors including mental, financial, societal etc etc. Sindh Assembly’s saying 18 is minimum age is lain wrong and arresting someone for that “crime” is oppressive


More in Pakistan