Everyone celebrated International Women’s Day yesterday. I am writing a blog a day after. Maybe some causes needs to be addressed through out the year and not one a particular day.
When I was young my grandparents used to tell stories about how young their sisters were 8 or 9 when they got married. My paternal grandmother due to some issues got married only when she was 19 and that was considered a very late marriage. My grandfather told me that one of his sister’s marriage was held in secret due to a child marriage act. I remembered the name of the act very well and so I googled it only today. The act fixed the marriageable age for girls at 14 years and 18 years for boys. It is popularly known as the Sharda Act after its sponsor, Harbilas Sarda. In 1949, after India’s independence, the minimum age was increased to 15 for females, and in 1978, it was increased again for both females and males, to 18 and 21 years, respectively. My maternal grandmother who got married in 1950 was 13 at the time of marriage, so yes even after independence child marriages did happen.
But women have come a long way in our family. None of my family were married young since then. Girls have been given good education and the quality of life has definitely improved with each generation.
Meanwhile, I casually sit down watched my husband take print outs as he prepared to file tax for the current fiscal year. In fact I know how to do taxes but , I decided that is a work and that he can have full ownership. I also told him that he needs to renew our passports. Women’s rights are not applicable when so much of paperwork is involved 😀.