Wedding cards with birth dates to curb child marriages

Bharatpur: The unique idea of printing the date of birth of brides and grooms on wedding cards to curb child marriages has yielded encouraging results in the district this year, an official claimed.

The district collector in order to check child marriages had made it mandatory to inscribe the date of birth with slogans against child marriage on the wedding invitation cards last month. "It is mandatory for each printing press owner to print the date of birth of the bride and groom on wedding invitation cards which was properly followed and gave positive results," Gaurav Goyal, the District collector, told PTI today.

"Aakha Teej was the main occasion yesterday when child marriages are supposed to take place on a large scale but not a single incident of child marriage reported in Bharatpur," he claimed.

"Though a few scheduled child marriages were stopped yesterday by the district administration and police, wedding cards played key role in barring people from tying knot of their kids as well as in creating awareness among masses particularly in the younger generation," he said.

"Cases are there in which the family member of the grooms decided to cancel or postpone the marriage because the brides were minor. It all happened due to requirement of age proof for printing the wedding cards," Goyal said, adding that one FIR was registered on April 15 for not printing date of birth on cards.

SP Vikas Kumar said that teams of police and district administration made efforts to ensure that no incident of child marriage occurs in the district. Child marriages take place on mass scale particularly in rural areas of the state during the occasion of Akha Teej and the state government had directed all the district collectors and SPs to check such marriages.