Parliamentary panel examining bill on marriage age of women gets another extension
NEW DELHI — A parliamentary committee examining a bill seeking to raise the age of marriage of women from the present 18 years to 21 has been given another extension to table its report.
The Budget session of Parliament beginning January 31 is the last session of the present Lok Sabha before parliamentary elections are announced.
The committee will now finalise its report by May following the four-month extension while the term of the 17th Lok Sabha ends on June 16.
The Prohibition of Child Marriage (Amendment) Bill, 2021, which was introduced in the Lok Sabha and remains pending there, is likely to lapse when the tenure of the House ends in June.
Bills introduced in the Lok Sabha and pending there as well as those passed by the Rajya Sabha and pending in the lower house lapse on the dissolution of the Lok Sabha.
“Chairman, Rajya Sabha, has granted extension of time for a period of four months with effect from 24th January, 2024 to the Department-related Parliamentary Standing Committee on Education, Women, Children, Youth and Sports for examination of The Prohibition of Child Marriage (Amendment) Bill, 2021,” a bulletin issued on January 24 said.
The committee has been given extensions to finalise its report in the past too. The Prohibition of Child Marriage (Amendment) Bill, 2021 was introduced in the Lok Sabha in December 2021 and was referred to the standing committee on Education, Women, Children, Youth and Sports which functions under the Rajya Sabha Secretariat.
Soon after introducing the bill, Women and Child Development Minister Smriti Irani had requested the Lok Sabha speaker to refer the bill to the standing committee for detailed examination.
Irani told the House that the government was seeking to bring parity among men and women. She said the Bill also seeks to override all existing laws, including any custom, usage or practice governing the parties in relation to marriage.