The Assam government would give 'one tola' (10 gramme) of gold to every bride of the state from 2020 onward. BJP government in the state will roll out the 'Arundhati Gold Scheme' in the state from January 1, 2020.
Assam Finance minister Dr Himanta Biswa Sarma said the move was aimed to strengthen women empowerment and reduce child marriage. "Assam government has decided in our budget that we will give one tola [10gm] of gold to the bride if a marriage is solemnised and registered. Because, if you register a marriage then there will be a minimum age which is notified as 18 years and 21 years for the bride and bridegroom," Sarma said.
"Now any marriage which will be registered, the bride will get Rs 30,000 from the state government to purchase gold. But, to have benefit from the scheme, your minimum age has to be 18 years and 21 years and you have to matriculate (Class 10 pass)," he added.
The Assam government has mentioned four conditions to avail this benefit-
1.The bride should be an adult (18 or 18 plus) and the groom should be above 21 years.
2. The bride should have studied at least till Class 10. However, the educational criteria would not be applicable to girls of tea tribes and the Adivasis.
3. The marriage of the bride must be registered.
4. Lastly, the annual income of the family of the bride has to be less than Rs 5 lakh .
Sarma also said that the 'Arundhati Gold Scheme' would cost state exchequers around Rs 800 crore per annum.
Nearly 3 lakh marriages take place every year in Assam but only 50,000 to 60,000 are registered, Sarma added.
According to bankbazaar.com, the current gold rate in Assam is Rs 3,727 per gram.
(With agencies input)