In India, 47 percent of girls are married before the age of 18. Refusals are few and far between. Child marriage is illegal in India but the practice still flourishes in rural parts of the country. VV-PACS Community Correspondent Sanjay Jaiswal from Maharajganj reports on the secret weddings of child brides in Laxmipur & Nautarma block. The reasons are many such as poor families view girl child as a burden because of the dowry system. Most of the girls are submissive and participate in a culture of silence towards gender discrimination. Madhuri soon dropped out of school after getting married at the age of 14. This is the case with most of the girls married early. Once married, girls tend not to go to school. 'I was scared if I objected my parents would beat me up' says Rinkala. These aren't the only negative consequences on the young bride. Child brides are twice as likely to die in childbirth as women between the ages of 20 and 24. Call to Action: To help these girls and many others before they are consumed by the practice of child marriage you can call the SDM on 05522222044 and ask him to stop child marriages in Maharajganj district. About the Partnership: The Poorest Areas Civil Society (PACS) Programme and Video Volunteers have come together to create the Community Correspondents Network. The videos generated by the network will be able to highlight voices from the margins, providing skills to social communicators to provide advocacy tools to community based organisations.
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