PALAKKAD: It seems that the anti-child marriage law hasn’t made any inroads in the tribal areas and the illegal practice continues in these places unabated. Recently, a 15-year-old girl was married to a 24-year-old boy at a tribal colony at Melethoduki in Attappady.
Anitha, daughter of Chandran from Thadikundu Tribal Colony, was married to Kurumban, from Melethoduki Tribal Colony. Kurumban works as a daily wage labourer at Ottappalam.
“She had just passed her SSLC from Puthuperiyaram MRS Ashram School at Palakkad with good marks and wanted to study further.
“But, her marriage has dashed her dreams of studying further. Her parents were opposed to the idea of allowing a girl to go for higher studies,” said one of her classmates, under condition of anonymity.
Though she was born to illiterate parents, Anitha had somehow managed to study till Std X. But, her marriage to an illiterate man has dashed her dreams of achieving higher education, added the classmate.Also, the tribal promoter of the Colony Chandran K instead of notifying the administration kept mum in spite of having prior knowledge about the function.
Anitha’s case is not an isolated incident in the Tribal Colonies of Attappady. A couple of weeks ago another child marriage had taken place here.
When the tribal promoter was asked as to why he had not informed the concerned officials, he said, “If I inform the authorities the parents of the girl might have been arrested.” He refused to comment further on the issue.Even though the many of the literate tribals are opposed to child marriage, they are afraid to raise their voice against it.
This incident strengthens the fact that child marriage is rampant in the State even though the administration claims that active steps are being taken to stop child marriage.
When contacted Palakkad District Collector K Ramachandran said, “No such cases has been reported to me so far. Strict action will be taken against all who promote child marriage.”