Sonepur/Bhubaneswar, 09/09/2017 ( Odisha Samachar / Abhisek Mohanty )-: As many as 11, 985 students from 39 junior colleges pledged for No to child marriage in a meeting organised for this purpose at Biju Pattnaik Womens’ College on Saturday.
Chief Guest of the occasion Dasarathi Satapathy, Collector and District Magistrate as well as the nodal officer for Prohibition of Child Marriage Act said, “Child marriage is a hurdle in the progress of the society. It hampers all the dimensions of the child rights. However, youth can work as change catalyst and can change the scenario. He highlighted that 39 junior colleges are organising similar kind of meetings at the same time involving around 11, 985 students for the cause of combating child marriage with the support of Child Development Protection Unit and Beti Zindabad of ActionAid.
Ghasiram Panda, programme manager of ActionAid told that the National family Health Survey – 4 revealed that about 22.2 per cent girls are getting married below the age of 18 and only 26 per cent are completing 10 year of schooling in Subarnapur. This high prevalence of child marriage also causes high IMR and MMR. Though child marriages are so prevalent, cases are not being reported as the child marriage prohibition officers who are unaware of their role. The efforts taken by the district is unique of its kind to combat child marriage. Youth power will definitely be able to brought change, he added.
Among other Dr Prafulla Ratha, DLC, Bhujanga Rao, DIPRO, Manoj Manjari Pahi, DSWO, Chaturbhuja Das, DCPO and principal of the College addressed the gathering.