Contract marriages: Minister promises action

Social Welfareand Panchayats Minister M K Muneer has said that the executive committee of ‘Nirbhaya’,the recentlylaunched state government initiative to ensure security of womenand children, would be directed to look into the ‘marriage fraud’ thriving inKozhikode, which was exposed by City Express on November 16.

The first edition of City Express published from Kozhikodeexposed the scam involving ‘marriage transactions’ worth lakhs of rupees, whichexploit the naivete of uneducated and conservative families in Kozhikode andthe new brideto- be is forced to pay off the husband’s current wife.

NGOs like Anweshi, and legal expertshave found the scam to be more prominent in the lower and middle class familiesof Muslim community, with the liberal marriage laws playing a huge role inpropagating the fraud.

Describing the issue as “shocking and asocial disaster”, the minister stressed the need for effective socialintervention to empower women to fight against such evil.

“Jagrutha Samithis under the StateWomen’s Commission will be equipped to assist women so they can protest againstany abuse, without any fear,” he said.

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The New Indian Express