Child marriage, divorce on rise at Char Kukri Mukri
CHAR FASSON, BHOLA, Feb 10: Child marriages and divorces have become a part of life in Char Kukri Mukri Union, an isolated island situated on the south of Char Fasson Upazila under the district.
Although the island has been identified as the natural disaster-prone area after 70s cyclone and acclaimed as 'Dwip Konna,' one of the amazing tourist destinations, the lifestyle of the people has not changed much, locals said. In every house, presence of child brides could be seen. In one out of two houses, divorcees and widows are found.
The island had many developments over the course of time. Dam, roads, bridges, street lights, luxurious rest-houses have been built here. The number of tourists is increasing here.
The lifestyle of Char Kukri-Mukri people is very heart-wrenching. Child marriages, dowry, divorces, healthcare crisis, and backwardness in education are still present there.
Jaynab Begum Lovely, 14, a student of class five of Rasulpur Village in the union couldn't continue her study because she was married off early. In the same family, Reshma, 13, was married off to her elder brother Jewel Hawlader seven years back.
Reshma has already given birth to two children. She is suffering from malnutrition badly.
The same fate fell upon Nurul Islam's daughter Sumi, 14, of the same village. She is the mother of twins now. She has become very skinny.
Besides the child bride, widows are suffering misery too. Shahanara, a widow spends her days in a small house. Her sons do not take care of her. She earns her bread and butter through farming 11 cows.
On the other hand, the plight of widows Nurjahan, Bilkis and Shahinur brings gloom to the air of Kukri.
Beside the dam of Char Kukri, Nurjahan Begum, 23, is seen with an infant on her lap. She named the baby Rabiul Hasan. She is spending her motherhood at her maternal tiny house. Her second husband, and the father of the child, has not visited his son yet.
Her first daughter Eti, a child from her first husband and is now eight years old, has not seen her father yet. She is abandoned by her ex-husbands. She is now a burden on her widow mother.
Another woman Bilkis, 35, was married with Bachhcu Fakir when his first wife was on her deathbed. After their marriage, his first wife suddenly got well and her husband left her and went to his first wife. She is going through a tough life with her daughter Lamia and son Manna.
Fatema was ill in her early 20's. She has to manage her two kids. She along with her children is suffering from various diseases related to malnutrition.
Child bride Aysha, 13, was married in Dulatkhan Upazila of Bhola. She was married with Alamin.
According to the government statistics, in Char Kukri Mukri, 450 women are widowed. In total, 723 families live there with total population of 8,3,62.
As per the statistics of other private organisations, the divorces and child marriages are higher than the government one.