Child Marriage

Programme Background

The project was developed considering the following issues:

Society in western Rajasthan is highly patriarchal and orthodox in nature, directly affecting the girl child. Children, especially girls are not considered as equal citizens with rights and opinions, and their participation is negligible in decision-making and even matters related to their lives. As a result, children grow and develop in an environment which does not respond to their needs and rights. Child marriage is quite prevalent in this region with average age of marriage for girls being around 15 years with 28.3 % of girls getting married before 18. Incidents of early pregnancies such as delivering a child at 17 years are also frequent. These incidents results in depriving them of their childhood, forced labour, domestic violence, high maternal and child mortality rates apart from other dangers to health. The child marriages are mostly held during AakkhaTeej/Akshay Tritiya festival and Peepal Purnima which falls normally in the month of May every year. Since the festival is considered very auspicious for marriages, parents try to marry off their children during these festivals.



Bikaner district


1. Training of Panchayat Level Child Protection Committee members on gender based violence & Child marriage.

2. Convergence meeting with VLCPC, Govt. officials, PRI, Children on child protection issues.

3. Orientation of Traders/service providers/govt. officials was done to stop child marriage in all the blocks of Dist. Bikaner, Sri Ganganagar, Hanumangarh and one block of Churu.

4. Divisional level workshop with senior govt. officials and leaders to share the recommendations to address the issue of child marriages.

5. Theatre workshops for children on child marriage, child labour and sexual abuse

6. Intensive Campaigns against Child Marriage (holding rallies, broadcasting messages through loudspeaker mounted on vehicle, display of banners, posters and performances of skits and plays, puppet shows by team of local artists. ) around Akkhateejfestival in 46villages.

7. IEC material printed on child protection/child marriage issues and distributed/displayed in villages.

8. Wall paintings on child marriage issues were done in 46 villages for greater visibility and outreach.


Urmul Setu Sansthan has successfully managed in sensitizing people against this evil social practice and has contributed in reducing the incidents of child marriages in the project villages. Sensitization and liaisoning with local govt. authorities resulted in issuing an official order by Tehsildars of Block Lunkaransar (Dist. Bikaner) and Block Sadulshahar( Dist. Sri Ganganagar) in the year 2019 directing service providers to ensure/verify the age of bride and grooms before providing their services in marriage ceremonies. The local administration established special control room to respond to any such incident that may take place in the area. Local media supported by highlighting the project activities and publishing articles against child marriages. Organization supported in formulating a formal code of conduct for children group, which morally bounds its members not to get married before attaining the age of legal marriage. Children of project area have reported more than 150 incidents of child marriages through village child protection committees and child helpline 1098. Trained children also performed theatre, skits, plays in villages and schools to educate and sensitize people against the implications of child marriage. Wall paintings on child marriage were done in 46 villages for greater visibility and IEC materials displayed/distributed in project villages. Sarpanch’s of around 20 villages declared their villages as “Child Marriage free village”. Sarpanch’s of 11 gram panchayats endorsed proposal to make their panchayats a child friendly panchayats. These positive initiatives and collective efforts have led to reducing the incidents of child marriages in our project area.

"The campaigns have greatly helped raise awareness of people on the implications of child marriage. However, continuous efforts needs to be made to change the mind-set of people. I will continue to motivate people and ensure that no child marriages are held in my family and in my village."

– Muli Devi, SHG member, Binjharwali