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Miracles do happen: Married at 1, woman freed from child marriage on her 20th birthday

September 9, 2022
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Jaipur: After facing 20 years of struggle in the fetters of child marriage which was tied at the age of just one year, Rekha got the gift of annulment of child marriage on her birthday on Thursday.

After the support of Saarthi Trust’s Managing Trustee and Rehabilitation Psychologist Dr. Kriti Bharti, Rekha had filed the case for annulment of child marriage in the Family Court to get rid from her child marriage. Judge Pradeep Kumar Modi of Jodhpur’s Family Court No. 2 gave a historic decision to annul Rekha’s child marriage, sounding a strong message against the evil of child marriage.

Twenty-one-year-old Rekha, a resident of Jodhpur, was caught in the clutches of child marriage with a youth resident of a village in the same town in 2002. Rekha was only one year old at the time of child marriage. Her in-laws pressurized her for the ritual Gauna and sent her to her in-laws’ house a few years back. Due to this, Rekha’s dream of becoming an ANM (nurse) shattered and she fell into depression. On the other hand, the in-laws put the pressure of a caste penalty of up to Rs 10 lakh on Rekha and her family.

Meanwhile, Rekha came to know about the campaign for the annulment of the child marriage of Kirti, who is a famous activist and included in the list of BBC 100 Inspirational Women. Rekha, with the help of Dr. Kriti Bharti of Saarthi Trust, filed a case in Jodhpur Family Court for annulment of her child marriage. On the other hand, she motivated Rekha to take admitted to the ANM course.

Judge Modi giving a strong message against the evil practice of child marriage said that for a century, the evil of child marriage has not been eradicated. Now everyone should get together to take a pledge to eradicate child marriage.

Meanwhile, Kriti says, “Rekha got the gift of annulment of child marriage on her birthday. Now after the cancellation of her child marriage, her dream of becoming an ANM will be fulfilled. Efforts are being made for her better rehabilitation.”

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