India is home to 1/3 of the World's Child Brides
The custom of child marriage is about 2000 years old in India. The Laws of Manu, an ancient revered text recommends that the age of the husband be about 3 times that of the bride. So for eg. it says a 24 year old man is entitled to an 8 year old girl.
When a custom is entrenched in religion -- it becomes very deeply seated in a people's psyche, and it does not engage with reason. In India, social workers, ngos, even groups formed of village women trying to enforce change in this custom from within, have come under brutal attack.
Yesterday November 14 was Children's day in India. The 50 Million Missing commemorated it with this post on 'The Child Brides of India'