22 Dec 2015

Child Bride: CHILDLINE averts Child marriage of minor girl in West Bengal

Pampa Pahan was a 15 year old tribal girl from West Bengal. A bright student of class IX, her father, Baidyanath Pahan was a daily labourer and her mother, Laxmi Pahan a house wife. Hailing from very poor conditions the family’s monthly income was around Rs. 2000 only. Her father, the only bread winner of the family, was fending for Laxmi, Pampa and her four sisters. 

Giving in to their destitute conditions Pampa’s father decided to get her married. A strong willed Pampa adamantly rebelled against her father’s decisions as she was keen on continuing her studies. Despite all of her efforts to persuade her parents, the girl was left with no option but to give in and accept the proposed marriage.   

A person named Arun Sarkar called 1098 and informed CHILDLINE about Pampa’s impending marriage. On receiving the call, CHILDLINE visited the girl’s family. After thorough investigation, a complaint was lodged with the District Social Welfare Officer who was also the Child Marriage Prohibition Officer (CMPO).  The CMPO, on his part, informed the matter in writing, to Balurghat Police Station. Following intimation from the appropriate authority, the concerned officials of Balurghat Police Station & CHILDLINE jointly intervened to prevent Pampa’s marriage from taking place.

After prolonged discussions, persuasion and counseling by the CHILDLINE team, Pampa’s parents, relatives and the neighbors were convinced about the consequences of child marriage and as a result, the team was successful in stopping the marriage.  Furthermore, Pampa’s father gave a commitment that he would not arrange his daughter’s marriage till she attains 18 years of age. Now Pampa is continuing her studies and plans for a prosperous career.

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