Child Marriage And International Human Rights Norms Essay

1792 Words Nov 22nd, 2016 8 Pages
India currently has the highest number of child brides worldwide, despite the fact that the practice of child marriage is illegal in the country. This trend is particularly relevant, as it reveals that child marriage—a significant human rights violation—has seemingly continued unabated in the region. This exploratory essay aims to understand why the practice of child marriage remains in India. The paper will first provide a general definition of child marriage through the lens of human rights norms, as well as analyze how India is obligated to prohibit this violation. It will then explore several causes that have contributed to the continuance of this human rights crisis in India.

Child Marriage & International Human Rights Norms According to the United Nations (UN) Population Fund, child marriage can be defined as a formal marriage or informal union that takes place prior the age of 18. Child marriage is also viewed as synonymous with forced marriage, given that the marriage “involves either physical or emotional pressure” and that “children lack the choice or capacity to give their full consent.” The UN Human Rights Council issued a resolution in 2013 recognizing child marriage as a human rights violation; it also emphasized that the practice disproportionately affects girls. The UN, along with numerous international human rights treaties, have established that governments are accountable for violations of girls’ rights as a result of child marriage. It is also…

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