This post was originally published by UNFPA.
Three women with their children in Far Western Nepal. All of the women were child brides. © UNFPA Nepal/Santosh Chhetri
BAITADI DISTRICT, Nepal – A girl’s astrological birth chart can hold the keys to her future in this remote corner of Far Western Nepal. And in the right hands, this is a good thing.
When parents bring their daughter’s “cheena,” a chart made according to the Hindu astrological calendar, to 66-year-old astrologer and priest Dev Dutta Bhatta, he pays close attention to the birth year. If the girl is underage, he advocates for her parents to wait until she is an adult before arranging her marriage.