1,719 children sexually abused in 2005
KHAIRPUR, July 21 2006: As many as 1,719 children were sexually abused in Pakistan in 2005, a seminar has been told here. SAHIL, a non-government organisation working against child abuse, organised the seminar titled “Child’s rights: facts and responsibilities”. Giving details of the seminar, SAHIL representative Shujaat Ahmed Siddiqui said that in 2004 the number of reported case of children sexually abused was 1,567, which increased to 1,719 in 2005.
Of the 1,719 cases, 565 children were abducted with implications of sexual abuse, 143 (23 boys and 120 girls) were molested, 469 (69 per cent girls and 31 per cent boys) were rapped and sodomized, 315 girls were gang-rapped, 81 boys were gang-sodomised and 146 children were murdered after sexual assault. Siddiqui said the reasons behind such crime included taking revenge from the child’s family, frustration and anger. The director of SAHIL, Manizeh Bano Humera Hassan, informed the seminar that 13 million children do not go to school in Pakistan, three million are special children, more than three million children are being forced to do child labour and 5,000 children are in different jails of Pakistan.
The seminar was told that there are numerous myths in the society regarding child abuse. According to these myths, mostly strangers abuse children, the child sexual offender is generally a psychopath or looks evil, and abusers are generally poor and literate. He noted that eight teachers, 47 policemen and 17 Maulvis sexually assaulted children in 2005. He said children were sexually abused in fields, streets, jungles, hotels, jails workplaces, etc. Some 1,127 children were sexually abused in the Punjab, 458 in Sindh, 87 in the federal region, 32 in the NWFP and 15 in Balochistan.
The seminar recommended the government should ensure the safety of children and policymakers should prepare and implement policies that could protect every child from sexual abuse. It also suggested that the government should establish local child protection centers.
Source: The News