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Growing sexual child abuse in Pakistan

Child abuse is defined as the physical or emotional injury, sexual abuse, negligent treatment, or maltreatment of a child under age 18 by a person responsible for the child's welfare.
Growing sexual child abuse in Pakistan

Child abuse is defined as the physical or emotional injury, sexual abuse, negligent treatment, or maltreatment of a child under age 18 by a person responsible for the child's welfare. Child Protection Advocacy Group, Sahil, notes that disturbing 2,846 cases were reported across the country in the previous year. In other words, approximately 8 children were subjected to abuse each day of 2019. Sadly, half of them were girls. They are likely only scratching the surface as many other cases go unreported. 

According to Sahil’s Cruel Numbers report, statistics indicate that 65% cases were in Punjab, followed by 25% in Sindh, 3% in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP), 2% in Balochistan and 21 cases in Azad Jammu and Kashmir. 

Punjab topped the most cases of child abuse in the country with 65% cases. The Child Protection and Welfare Bureau were only able to rescue 11 children in the province.  According to a report titled Mapping of Issues and Response to Sexual Violence against Children, Punjab was considered as the most dangerous province for children.

The recent few years, we started a debate on sexual abuse and exploitation but still in certain sections of society. Unfortunately, many other stories will never see the light of day. In most cases that reported, they haven’t any support to confront their abuser. Furthermore, some children cannot explain due to a lack of vocabulary and clear understanding. 

Child abuse haunts Pakistani society due to many reasons. There are often chances that the perpetrator might be a family member and the lack of communication gap between parents and their children and their blind trust for family members contributes to child abuse occurring in this society.

In addition, from a young age they are taught not to question authority and they haven’t sense and often suffer alone, suppressing whatever horrors they are made to endure in silence. Many abusers are from within the family or close to the family members, earning and abusing their trust. But no abuser gets the punishment for his evil deeds. 

There might be severe cases of child abuse which may have not been presented in the mediums (print & electronic & social media), however even if this data is incomplete. It should still be a wake up call for authorities to act swiftly regarding this.

The majority of children that were subjected to abuse were between the age of 6 to 15. Children are one of the most vulnerable groups in any society but unfortunately, they are insecure in the Islamic Republic of Pakistan. And numbers are increasing day by day which is a threat to the future of Pakistan.

Last but not the least sex education should be mandatory in the Pakistani education system and the taboo regarding it should be erased so our children can live in a safer environment.


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