Alarming increase in child sexual abuse cases during 2010

Published: November 8, 2010

Most commonly girls from rural areas are targeted by people they know

ISLAMABAD: The number of children who are sexually abused in Pakistan has registered an alarming increase this year. According to the report of an NGO, 1216 children were victim to sex abuse in the first six months of this year (January-June 2010).

This is even more than the total number of cases reported during all twelve months of 2009. That figure was 968. The majority of this year’s cases were reported in Punjab and the perpetrators were acquaintances, neighbours or relatives of the children. In most cases, the victims are girls from rural areas.

The most common place for occurrence of child sex abuse is the perpetrator’s residence. According to Sahil’s report, the facts and figures have been collected from news published in 65 different newspapers of the country.

The report said, “We believe that the number of incidents presented in the print media do not represent the total numbers of such incidents in Pakistan-because such issues are taboo and not easily reported.”

The report revealed out of the 1216 children sexually abused in this time period, 331 were boys and 885 girls.

“Tragically, 81 per cent of ‘abusers’ were people known to the victim or their family, whereas the rest of 19 per cent were strangers” the report continued to reveal. The said number of children were abused by a total of 2425 perpetrators.

Data suggests that children between 11 to 15 years of age are most vulnerable to sexual abuse.

Almost 75 per cent of the cases reported were in Punjab, followed by 18 per cent in Sindh. Only 27 per cent of child sex abuse cases were from urban areas. The remaining 73 per cent were reported in rural areas.

While these incidents occur in a wide variety of places like open fields, the street, canal side, gardens and even graveyards etcetera, the most common places were either the victim or the perpetrator’s own houses. In 64 per cent of the cases, children were subjected to one-time abuses. Of all the cases printed in these newspapers, the authenticity of 82 per cent was supported by police registering cases against the accused.

Published in The Express Tribune, November 8th, 2010.

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Reader Comments (5)

  • Sajjad Ahmed
    Nov 8, 2010 - 2:03PM

    In my opinion, its not a matter of increase in such cases. Its a matter of realisation, awareness and better reporting thanks to print and electronic media watch.
    Our weaknesses are more exposed now a days. I take it positively as it provides us a chance to address greay areas rather than hiding them under the carpet. Recommend

  • Angelos
    Nov 8, 2010 - 3:37PM

    We need to put a stop to this before this becomes as common as in other parts of the world. This menace will be handled only by working on two fronts: prosecution of culprits as well as addressing the root cause of this issueRecommend

  • Talha
    Nov 8, 2010 - 11:59PM

    its already pretty common. Every society will have its share of perverts. We are no more pure than any other, even if we like to believe otherwise. And i would agree with the previous comment that its probably because of an increase in reports of such cases. If this is true, then this might be a good thing because an abused will only report abuse if he/she stands to gain something out of it. For this owe a thanks to a much more active media and positive attitude from the judiciary.

    Its hard to imagine a reason why an increase in such cases is noticeable in 2010. Nothing much has changed since then. Anyways this is a question the relevant NGO and authorities should look into.Recommend

  • muhammad ilyas
    Dec 1, 2010 - 12:35PM

    it is the matter of grave concern for all of us.it is because of ignorance and illiteracy.besides the very weak control of government over films and private movie business which display sex and third class literature in society which is strictly controlled in that sense is also equally responsible for this curse. all those people involved in this crime are not humans but the lust and ignorance has made them animals rather beasts.it is so surprising that their own children are also a part of this society and they can be a pray to a beast like them one day still they are doing it. besides the state of mind that exists in our society is a very bitter truth and a big shame for us being Muslims. the government is not showing any concern to monitor all these bloody sex literature that is openly being sold in the markets and now in mobiles and every where. apart from putting severe checks and penalties on the business of sex movies the government should run awareness programs throughout the country specially in rural areas where the cases are more, as part of school curriculum. this will help in many ways. it will help in guiding the children and will also point out those involved as criminals. at least an effort could be made to teach very young and it is not something to be shown any reservation. Recommend

  • anila ansari
    Dec 1, 2010 - 3:51PM

    Does Pakistan have Child Protection Services that respond to complaints of child abuse?If yes what government department they are part of?
    Robust Child protection procedures and systems save children from harm and abuse. If there are any, why don’t people know about them?I certainly don’t?
    We seriously need to develop a child protection policy /legislation in Pakistan and ensure it’s followed and implemented.
    Procedures and systems provide clear step-by-step guidance on what to do in different circumstances and they clarify roles and responsibilities. Systems for recording information and dealing with complaints of child abuse are also needed to ensure implementation and compliance.Recommend

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