“Arabi Kalyanam” again in Kerala

published on August 28, 2013

Kozhikode: In yet another case of forcing minor Muslim girls into wedlock with Arab nationals in Kerala, a seventeen-year-old girl had approached Child Welfare Committee alleging that the orphanage authorities, where she had been staying, forced her to marry a man from UAE.

In her complaint to the committee, the girl had alleged that the orphanage authorities “pressured” her to marry the man, who deserted her after honeymooning for 17 days and returned to his country.

The girl, studying in an orphanage run by a social service organization, was married to UAE national Jasim Mohammed Abdul Kareem on June 13, who divorced her two months after the marriage.

Cases were registered by the police under Prohibition of Child Marriage Act-2006, the Juvenile Justice Act and Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act.

Women activists, political leaders and NGOs in Kerala, who expressed outrage over the girl’s plight, demanded a legislation to check the social menace of ‘Arabi Kalyanam’ (Arab wedding), in which minor Muslim girls are forced into marriage with Arab nationals.


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