On March 20, Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma indicated during a budget session of the Assam Legislative Assembly that the government would take severe action against instances of child marriage.
In a speech to the House on the seventh day of the current budget session, the Assam Chief Minister said that the government has set aside Rs 200 crore so that there are no more child marriages in the state by the end of 2026.
CM Sarma said that no one will be exempt from the rule. He also said that anyone caught forcing a girl to have a child before she’s 14 or marrying off their kids before they’re old enough to do so will get a 14-year prison sentence. The husband of a girl who has a child before turning 14 will receive a 14-year prison sentence, according to CM Sarma’s government.
When CM Sarma was asked if child marriage cases need witnesses, he said that the POCSO Act doesn’t require witnesses to get a conviction.
When the Assam Budget 2023 was released on March 16, Assam’s Finance Minister Ajanta Neog said that the state had a lot of child marriages, which led to a lot of deaths of mothers and babies. So, the time had come for an urgent and quick solution to put a stop to this social ill.
On February, The government of Assam has formed a committee to finalise a rehabilitation strategy for child marriage victims in response to recent state police action, as the fight against child marriage is in full swing in the state.