Punjab lawmakers urge making NIC mandatory to prevent child marriage

LAHORE: Members of the Punjab Assembly have demanded an end to early marriages in the province and urged to increase the minimum age of marriage for girls from 16 to 18 years.

The women members of the two major political parties in the provincial assembly said that the age of marriage for girls in Punjab should be increased from 16 to 18 years and make the national identity card a mandatory document as evidence of age at the time of marriage.

MPA Sadia Sohail, Bushra Anjum Butt, and Bargad Executive Director Sabiha Shaheen were present at the press conference organized by Bargad, an organization working for youth development in Lahore.

Sadia Sohail Rana, a member of the Punjab Assembly from the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), said the age of marriage for girls should be raised from 16 to 18. League MPA Bushra Anjum Butt said that the condition of identity card should be made mandatory for the bride as well as the groom so that the process of marrying a 14-year-old girl by calling her 18 should be stopped.

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Both the members of the assembly demanded that the national identity card be made mandatory on the occasion of marriage.  The women members of the Punjab Assembly said that they would do their utmost to get the pending bill passed in this regard in the Provincial Assembly.

As many as 22,815 people have endorsed this petition so far demanding the government to increase the minimum age of marriage for girls in Punjab from 16 to 18 years. She aims to collect 50,000 signatures before presenting this to the Punjab Assembly.