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Legal marriage Age for Women

  • Vaid's ICS, Lucknow
  • 20, Dec 2021
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Why in News?

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in her Budget speech last year proposed a panel on the “age of a girl entering motherhood” to lower maternal mortality rates and improve nutrition levels.

  • But when the decision to appoint a task force was announced, its terms of reference included examining “the correlation of age of marriage and motherhood” with health and nutritional status of mothers and infants.

Important recommendations:

  • The age of marriage should be increased to 21 years.
  • The government should look into increasing access to schools and colleges for girls, including their transportation to these institutes from far-flung areas.
  • Skill and business training has also been recommended, as has sex education in schools.
  • These deliveries must come first, as, unless they are implemented and women are empowered, the law will not be as effective.

The committee has said the recommendation is not based on the rationale of population control (India’s total fertility rate is already declining) but more with women’s empowerment and gender parity. The committee has said access to education and livelihood must be enhanced simultaneously for the law to be effective.

Why is the law being relooked at?

  • From bringing in gender-neutrality to reduce the risks of early pregnancy among women, there are many arguments in favour of increasing the minimum age of marriage of women.
  • Early pregnancy is associated with increased child mortality rates and affects the health of the mother.
  • Despite laws mandating minimum age and criminalising sexual intercourse with a minor, child marriages are very prevalent in the country.
  • Also, according to a study, children born to adolescent mothers (10-19 years) were 5 percentage points more likely to be stunted (shorter for their age) than those born to young adults (20-24 years).


Card tokenization:

Tokenization will replace card details with a code, called a “token,” which will be specifically for the card, the token requestor and the device being used to pay. Instead of the card’s details, the token will act as the card at point of sale (POS) terminals and quick response (QR) code payment systems.

The goal of the process is to improve the safety and security of payments.


The Reserve Bank of India’s plans to move towards card tokenization is likely to hit a wide range of companies from major e-commerce firms and food delivery firms to lenders, while increasing the use of cash.

  • RBI issued guidelines in March 2020 saying that merchants will not be allowed to save card information on their websites to boost data security.
  • It issued fresh guidelines in September 2021 giving companies until the end of the year to comply with the regulations and offering them the option to tokenize.

Bhutan’s top civilian award for Modi:

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been conferred Bhutan’s highest civilian award, ‘Order of the Druk Gyalpo’.
  • The award was conferred by the King of Bhutan, Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck, in recognition of Modi’s contribution to India-Bhutan relations and his services to Bhutan and its people.
  • Modi is the first foreign head of government to receive the award.