Farah youth want marriage bill signed into law
FARAH CITY (Pajhwok): Youth representatives and civil society activists in western Farah province on Thursday praised the Wolesi Jirga for approving the marriage bill and asked the president to sign it into law soon.
The lower house of parliament had endorsed by a majority vote the bill that bans big fat wedding parties and “un-Islamic traditions” and specifies the number of guests and the amount groom must pay to the bride.
Presenting the draft marriage law before the house in four chapters and 23 articles, the Justice and Judicial Commission head, Mohammad Obda, had said the measure had been drafted by lawmakers and it had many objectives.
He said the draft law banned traditions in marriages that were in conflict with Islamic teachings. He said real Afghan cultural values had been considered in the bill which banned heavy costs on weddings, moral corruption and strengthened relations between husbands and their wives.
An investigative media report shows most social problems affecting youth result from ridiculously exorbitant costs on lavish marriages.
The report said addiction to drugs, work abroad, suicide attempts, inability to get married, family disputes and elopement cases among the youth are due to their parents’ inability to arrange marriages of their sons.
Noorul Haq Ahmadi, member of the peace committee, told Pajhwok Afghan News marriage costs in Farah hovered between 800,000 afghanis and one million afs. He said many youth crossed their age of marriage because they were unable to provide such a huge amount.
Mohammad Ibrahim Mohammadi, a Radio and Television Afghanistan (RTA) employee, said the youth in Farah were more worried about their marriages than education. From an early age, they started thinking how to accomplish heavy wedding costs, he said.
However, he said he was happy that the Wolesi Jirga had passed the marriage bill and urged its early endorsement by the president. Mohammadi believed the law would somehow resolve marriage related problems.
Women’s Affair Director Shah Gul Sadid said 184 incidents of violence against women had been registered last year. The incidents included elopement and men’s denial to pay alimony costs.
She said agreement between couples before marriage was important for a successful marital life as most violent incident resulted from differences between husbands and wives.
Naqibullah Naikmal, the director of Payisht weekly, said the approval of marriage bill was a major demand of the youth. “Our youth suffer due to poverty and most of them are unable to pay the expenses of their marriages.”
He said the president should sign the bill into law and asked the government to promote awareness about the law through various channels.
Farid Ahmad Ayubi, the information and cultural affairs director, also welcomed the approval of the marriage bill by the parliament. He said his department would launch awareness programs after the bill was endorsed by the president.
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