A report released this month by UNICEF has been cause for celebration in India, the country with the highest number of child marriages in South Asia each year. According to the newly released data, the annual number of child marriages in the country has dropped by nearly half in the last decade, and the average age of marriage has gone up.
But several activists say the report may not quite reflect the reality on the ground. There are two main issues: The numbers are likely not as low as they appear in the report. And they do not reflect the notable differences in the rates across geographies.