Former Congress leader and minister Sajjan Singh Verma has recently questioned on increasing the marriageable age for girls. Sajjan Singh Verma asked why should girls' marriageable age be increased from eighteen to twenty-one when the girl can start reproducing from the age of fifteen years as well.
Sajjan Singh Verma was questioning a statement passed by Madhya Pradesh's Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan on Monday. Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan was attending a 'Nari Samman' program on Monday. Shivraj Singh Chouhan had suggested that the marriageable age for girls should be increased from eighteen years to twenty-one years.
Responding to his statement, Sajjan Singh Verma said, "Doctors inform that even a fifteen-year-old girl can reproduce, then what is the need to increase the marriage age of girls to twenty-one years old? Has Shivraj Singh Chouhan become a bigger doctor than all??"
Sajjan Singh Verma also accused BJP's state government of failing to protect minor girls from being the victims of horrendous crimes. He said, "Madhya Pradesh tops in the number of rapes against minors. Instead of taking action in this, the Chief Minister is playing politics in full hypocrisy ."
Madhya Pradesh BJP's media panelist Neha Bagga reacted to Sajjan Singh Verma's remarks and said that he had insulted the daughters of India. She was quoted by the PTI saying, "Did he forget that his party's president is a woman? Priyanka Gandhi is also a woman? I urge Sonia Gandhi to direct Verma to apologize in public and sack him from the party."
Contrarily, a state Congress spokesman defended the minister's statement by saying that he was merely referring to doctors in his comments. Bhupendra Gupta said, "The BJP wanted to make an issue out of nothing. Verma has only asked if the CM knows about any valis research behind his demand for a debate on increasing the legal age of marriage of women to twenty-one-years."