** People rescuing an injured passenger from inside a passenger bus hit by a truck on Dhaka-Mawa Expressway in Shologhar area of Shreenagar upazila in Munshiganj on Thursday. ** Motorcycles allowed on Padma Bridge after 10 months ** Commuters charge extra fare, passengers disappointed ** 78 people killed in Yemen stampede ** Moon sighting committee meets today to ascertain Eid day ** 9 killed in road accidents in 3 districts ** US announces new $325 m military aid package for Ukraine ** Eid-ul-Fitr in Saudi Arabia today ** Eid exodus begins ** LPG price cut illusive ** 15 hurt as bus overturns in capital ** New interbank cheque clearing timings set for Eid holidays ** Four women hit by a train die in Tangail ** 12.28 lakh SIM users left Dhaka on Tuesday ** Sylhet engineer threatened over power outage ** People rush to village homes to spend Eid holidays with their near and dear ones. This photo was taken from Sadarghat Launch Terminal on Tuesday. NN photo ** Surge in cases of dehydration, diarrhoea amid summer heat wave ** Padma Bridge construction cost increases by Tk 2,412cr ** PM gives Tk 90m to Bangabazar fire victims ** Textile workers block highway demanding wage, Eid bonus ** Attack on PM's motorcade Ex-BNP MP, 3 others get life term ** Load-shedding increases for demand of electricity during heat wave ** Motorbikes to be allowed on Padma bridge from Thursday ** 5-day Eid vacation begins from today ** Take Nangalkot train accident as a warning about negligence of govt functionaries **

Rights groups call for increased investment on girl's education to prevent child marriage

15 October 2021

Leaders of different rights groups on Thursday demanded that Bangladesh makes increased investment on education of girls to prevent child marriage and keep retain the kids in schools.
The call came at a virtual press conference held by The National Committee for the International Rural Women's Day Celebration on the eve of the International Rural Women's Day, which will be observed on Friday.
The press briefing discussed the surge in child marriage especially during the COVID pandemic when the educational institutions remained closed for one year and half.
Lack of effective monitoring and measures by the local administration and law enforcement authorities, the return of migrant workers who are seen as perfect grooms, a drop in income, and the perception of girls as a burden, among other factors played a vital role in this regard, it was told in the press conference.
It was also told that dropout rates of girls have increased, which can be seen in the attendance numbers after schools finally reopened on September 12.
Tamanna Rahman, Abu Hanif, Belal Hossain, Lutfor Rahman Labu, Masuda Faruque Ratna, P M Billal, Rashida Begum, Tahrima Afroz, Sheikh Asad, Khondoker Faruk Ahmed, Ashraful Hasan Taimur members of the district committee spoke during the program presided by Shamima Akhter, the chairperson of the committee.
Mustafa Kamal Akhand from equitybd and Rezaul Karim Chowdhury, Executive Director of COAST Foundation also spoke at the event.
In her keynote address Ferdous Ara Rumee mentioned that Bangladesh ranks fourth in the world in terms of child marriage. The country has more than 4 million child brides, according to the UNICEF.
Furthermore, it has risen at an alarming rate during the pandemic. Due to the continued closure of schools, insolvent rural families have found themselves in a precarious situation. Because the administration and law enforcement authorities are swamped by the pandemic, parents can easily marry off their daughters, she said.
Tamanna Rahman said that the dropout rate of girls has increased, and most of them fell victim to child marriage. Most of these marriages are not registered.
They will be deprived of any legal aid in the future because of this, she said.
Masuda Faruk Ratna said that as administration and law enforcement agencies were busy dealing with the pandemic, they could not implement the initiatives taken against child marriage by the government.
Rezaul Karim Chowdhury said that different studies showed that the rate of child marriage decreased when girls are engaged in higher secondary education and graduation level. "Therefore, we should focus on increasing expenditure regarding girls' education,"he said.
Lutfor Rahman Labu said that girls were facing various threats during the pandemic. Many guardians married off their daughters as they were concerned as to when schools would reopen, or how their families would be defaced if girls were to engage in romantic affairs. But this kind of thinking is faulty, he said.
On behalf of the organizers, Mustafa Kamal Akand mentioned that more than 60 districts in the country are celebrating International Rural Women's Day. Every year, rallies, seminars, demonstrations, fairs, and award-giving ceremonies for rural women with contributions in different sectors are organized to celebrate the occasion.

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