Assam CM to launch an operation against child marriage in September


Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma on Friday said that the state government will launch a massive operation to combat child marriage in the state in the month of September.

Addressing the 2-day Superintendent of Police (SP) conference held in Bongaigaon started on Friday, the Assam Chief Minister directed all Superintendents of Police (SPs) to be ready for an effective measure against child marriage.

“There are some vintage Acts which have come to our notice and we are repealing those Acts soon. We will soon bring an Act where multiple marriages will be stopped in all communities, marriage age will be legally fixed for all the communities, more legislative steps will be taken,” CM Sarma said.

He further highlighted the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act and said that POCSO doesn’t deal only with child marriage.

“POCSO applies equally to every people, every citizen belonging to any religion. So, whenever child marriage comes to our notice, we have to launch prosecution under POCSO, we have to go under the POCSO Act because it is a secular Act that doesn’t deal with any religion,” Mr Sarma added.

He said that legislative backing is to be given to ensure the prosecution of the accused held for polygamy and child marriages. Another operation to combat child marriages is to begin in September, police personnel must communicate in civil and polite language to members of the public and complainants.

The Assam CM further said that crime against women has drastically come down to 14,030 cases in 2022 as against 29,046 cases in 2021, much below the annual average of 27,240 cases between 2017-2021.

“Crimes against children have come down to 4084 as against 5282 in the previous year. High-profile cases must be tried in Special Courts, Special Public Prosecutors must be deployed and charge sheets must be filed in the stipulated period in order to serve as a deterrent for future crimes,” CM Sarma added.