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Pait likkhi (Urdu: پیٹ لکھی) (Pait (Urdu: پیٹ) means stomach and Likkhi (Urdu: لکھی) means written; literally written on stomach) is a custom in tribal regions and rural areas of Pakistan wherein two families agree to marry their children before they are born or are still very young. The actual marriage takes place when groom and bride are in their late teens or adults.

Most women get married between the ages of 13-16, although the Child Marriages Restraint Act makes it illegal for girls under the age of 16 to be married off by their parents or guardians. The majority of men were aged between 18-25 at the age of marriage. Marriages are often organized by the village elders when the prospective spouses are children and solemnized years later. Many of the villagers believe that these marriage customs are Muslim and that the rights and obligations of husband and wife follow the Sharia (Islamic Religious Law). However, there is no Islamic text encouraging such a practice. Islamic Law holds that a husband must be able to support his wife, and that both partners consent out of free will.

Addo Baddo (Urdu: اڈو بڈو) is a very similar custom wherein two families agree to marry their daughters to boys of other clans when they are children.

See also

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