The passing of the Sindh Child Marriage Restraint Bill, 2013, by the Sindh Assembly is the landmark legislation of the province of Sindh that has taken lead and will serve an effective deterrence against the oppression of underage marriages, said Mian Manzoor Ahmed Wattoo, President Punjab PPP in a statement issued here today.
He congratulated the Party High command, members of the Sindh Assembly and the government of the province for the legislation that would cut the roots of discrimination against the women folk in particular.
It may be mentioned here that the Bill stipulates as a cognizable and non-boilable offence if marriage of a couple is solemnized below the age of 18 years entailing maximum three years rigorous punishment and not less than two years and the case must be decided within ninety days.
He recalled that the Pakistan People’s Party Women Wing launched a campaign against the child marriage in the recent past and protested against this in front of the Lahore Press Club, Lahore. The Women Wing of Punjab PPP also undertook a successful campaign to secure signatures of the civil society against the child marriage and the response was amazing.
He said that the Sindh Assembly passing of the bill against child marriage was the first dividend of the campaign of the PPP Women Wing, Punjab, and they were very happy over this development which was overdue.
He urged the other provincial governments of the federation to follow the the Sindh Provincial Assembly and legislate similar legislation because child marriage cruel practice was not Sindh specific but was prevalent throughout the country.
He expressed his confidence that with the passing of the law, and other provinces doing the same would enhance the image of the country at the international level and would also be instrumental in meeting international obligations regarding human rights Pakistan was one of the signatories.
He also maintained that the implementation of the law would bring qualitative change in empowering of the women segment of the society because they would be treated at par with the male citizens of the society
He assured full support of the PPP, Punjab, to facilitate the legislation in Punjab prohibiting the child marriages on the same analogy as in the province of Sindh.