Good morning one and all. Respected Principal, teachers and my dear friends, it is my pleasure and privilege to stand before you today. I am honored to have this opportunity to speak to such a distinguished audience.Today on this occasion, I would like to talk about one of the greatest ills of society, child labour. Unfortunately, even after entering the 21st century, humankind has failed to abolish the malpractice of child marriage .
This type of marriage is a social issue that has been a tradition in many parts of the world since ancient times. Child marriage is different from ordinary marriages because it involves marrying off children who are under the age of 18, often against their will. This is a vicious cycle that perpetuates poverty and inequality.
It is a violation of human rights. The children involved are deprived of their rights to education and opportunities. More often than not, girls are forced into a life of dependency and are mistreated, because these girls are restricted from gaining knowledge, they have to depend on their husbands. The young brides are exploited and abused physically.
If not taken care of properly they are at a risk of many health problems because of early pregnancy and childbirth. Since these young girls are not provided with education, they can not work and thus they are stopped from contributing to the economy and progress. This in turn leads to a lack of economic development in their communities and perpetuates the cycle of poverty.
Childhood is an age of exploring, playing and learning and these unfortunate children are deprived of all these rights. Instead, they are forced to grow up early and quickly and take on roles that require more maturity than their actual ages. Although the Indian law has criminalised child marriage, it is still prevalent in some places.
It is very crucial that awareness should be raised and more people should be educated on this matter. Governments, citizens and organisations must come together and end this practice. We must all unite to ensure that this practice ends and every child receives the opportunity to live a full and happy life.