7 December, 2016 Kathmandu,

Nepal genuinely needs to have clear and consistent legislations and a strong mechanism for establishing 20 years as the marriage age. It is vital to safeguard girls as it endangers their lives and denies their rights to education and health. Mr. Raju Prasad Chapagain, the JuRI chairperson, delivering a presentation, offered concrete suggestions for the amendment of existing law in dealing with child marriage.

“The legal reform is obligatory, including but not limited to criminalizing all elements of child marriage, increasing the range of punishment corresponding to gravity of crimes, and guaranteeing adequate interim relief to the victims,” stated Mr. Chapagain at an interaction jointly organized by JuRI-Nepal, the Parliamentary Committee on Women, Children, Senior Citizens and Social Welfare, Centre for Reproductive Rights (CRR) and UNFPA in Kathmandu.

During interaction, suggestions were solicited from the people represented all walks of life, in order to amend the existing legal provisions to strengthening the legal protection against child marriage. Further, a proposal shared by JuRI-Nepal highlighted the amendment in relation to domestic violence, child labour, child protection, dowry, birth registration, human trafficking and local self-governance.

The interaction was chaired by Hon Ranju Kumari Jha, the Chairperson of the Parliamentary Committee. Hon Jha from the chair, vowed to take it forward. The event was well-attended by CSO representatives working in the field of child marriage, member of Nepal Bar Association and the media. JuRI-Nepal together with CRR will duly compile and consolidate the suggestions and submit them to the Parliament and other concerned government agencies.