PM Narendra Modi calls for an end to gender discrimination in India

"When a girl gets married at 13 or 14, 99 percent of them will drop out of school then", Miles said.

"I feel really blessed that I am having a baby".

"Worldwide, girls are far more likely to miss out on school, marry too early and grow up too fast", said Carolyn Miles, president & CEO of Save the Children.

It's needed for a variety of reasons, but here are some of the more troubling ones: "Despite progress in recent years, girls continue to suffer severe disadvantage and exclusion in education systems throughout their lives", a report from Unicef reveals.

"We committed to ending discrimination and violence against girls, and harmful practices like child marriage".

While Sweden comes top, Niger is at the bottom, with the United Kingdom at number 15, a ranking affected by its relatively high teen pregnancy rate of 15.3 per 1,000 births.

Countries at the bottom of the index include Niger, Chad, Central African Republic, Mali and Somalia, many of which have high rates of child marriage.

"One such issue that is standing in the way of girls' progress is child marriage", the United Nations said, adding "one in three girls in developing countries (except China) get married before they turn 18".

Wonder, Khan Wow Crowd at Prince Tribute Show
Wonder recreated the harmonica solo he had played on that single, before the duo performed 1999 - one of the night's highlights. The night began with Obama's pre-recorded message where he stated, "Thank you, Prince, for all the great works you have done".

Especially, in developing nations, in war-hit areas, refugee camps, rural villages, etc. girls and young women do not get the respect and appreciation they deserve.

He explained that by empowering the girl child, 40% of the job of development would have been done, considering their roles in all facets of development, starting from their roles in raising kids. The figures are therefore for young women who were married and under 15 before 2010.

One girl under the age of 15 is married every seven seconds, according to a report published today by Save the Children.

India has been named as the country with the highest number of child marriages globally, with nearly half of all girls - around 24.6 million - married before they reach the age of 18.

The study shared an index of "girls opportunities", rating countries on criteria like education and child brides.

If we've largely eradicated child marriage in developed countries, we can - and must - do it everywhere else. By 2050 this number would reach 1.2 billion. But there are countries that are placed much lower on the index overall but that have a higher percentage of female MPs.

She also announced that the ministry has sponsored a bill on Gender and Equal Opportunities at the the National Assembly as well as the launching of the Social Protection Programme to assist indigent children to go to school. We invest in childhood - every day, in times of crisis and for our future.

  • Sonia Alvarado