Bhubaneswar24/10/19:: To end child marriage in Odisha, the Department of Women & Child Development and Mission Shakti has launched a state Strategic Action Plan (SAP) with support of UNICEF & UNFPA.
A conference was organised as part of the launching ceremony in presence of Child Marriage Prohibition Officers (CMPOs) from each block. Over 400 functionaries from the Department of WCD were present on the occasion.
Smt. Tukuni Sahu, Hon’ble Minister, Department of Women & Child Development and Mission Shakti, Government of Odisha inaugurated the conference. Among others, Smt. Anu Garg, IAS, Principal Secretary, Department of Women & Child Development and Mission Shakti, Government of Odisha, Smt. Sujata R Karthikeyan, IAS, Commissioner-cum-Director, Mission Shakti, Government of Odisha, Shri Aravind Agrawal, IAS, Director, Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS)& Social Welfare, Government of Odisha, Dr. Deepa Prasad, State Programme Co-ordinator, UNFPA and Smt. Monika Nielsen, Chief of field office, UNICEF, Odisha were also present during this launching ceremony.
Articulating her concern regarding the relatively high prevalence of Child Marriage in some districts, Smt Tukuni Sahu said that there is an immediate need to take all possible steps by government, civil society, international bodies and communities and families should take proactive action to stop this social evil which is strongly embedded in social practices.The State Strategic Action Plan (2019-2024) is a comprehensive and time-bound approach to accelerate actions to deal with the complexities of ending child marriage. The SAP is expected to serve as a “multi-layered and multi-sectoral intervention” that aims at eliminating child marriage. Actions outlined in the strategic focus areas would be implemented with strong linkages among all stakeholders and coordination across all tiers of governance, synergistic and coordinated efforts by multiple departments would be the key to achieving the goal set to end child marriage.