‘Rapes’ – the age of mental plague in Pakistan

In 1996, a 9-year-old girl was abducted and murdered in Texas, United States. Amber Hagerman was abducted and ravished while she was playing with her brother outside their house. After four days, her body was found nearby the creek, and probe revealed that the girl had been sexually assaulted before being killed.
In Amber’s searing abduction and death provoked her family to become fierce and took it to the streets to raise voice against such incidents. Such communal solidarity paved the way for facing such mayhem and their solution, compelled law enforcement agencies to take stern action and to take preventive measures to avert the same. Surprisingly, a call from a woman into a local radio station stirred a nationwide campaign and resulted in the formation of a mechanism of providing information to LEA’s about occurrence of incidents alike. This operation was known as “amber alerts’ ‘. Subsequent to prompt response, in the year 2003, during the reign of President George W. Bush it was installed throughout the country to forestall such events.
In January, 2018the rape and murder of 7-year-old Zainab Ansari in Kasur, Punjab, led to nationwide outrage and compelled the government to take prompt action.
Zainab’s death was followed by massive protests across the country, that called on the Government to take up protective measures for children against increased incidents of sexual abuse and violence.
On June 122018 the Supreme Court upheld the convictions of Imran Ali for the rape and murder of Zainab Ansari and at least eight other girls. Imran Ali was executed on October 17, 2018.
Despite all efforts taken by the authorities the curse pervades so far. Approximately, eight children are sexually harassed every day in Pakistan. Not only women, girls are being harassed, raped, and murdered but, adult boys are also facing this dilemma.
On 25thSeptember 2020, a seven years old boy found in Karachi, according to the police, victim Haris was subjected to unnatural lust before being murdered in shafiq colony in Karachi.
The incinerated body of a fiveyears’ old girl was found wrapped in clothes near Essa Nagri, Karachi on 6th Sep 2020, unknown men kidnapped, raped and meanwhile burnt her body.
Child sexual abuse remains mostly common in Pakistan with 243 cases reported in just, Punjab, in the first seven months of 2020.
According to the Punjab police, there have been at least 2,043 registered cases of individual rape, meanwhile 111 cases of gang rape reportedin the province this year.
The independent Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP), said violence against women and children has increased over the last few years, during which HRCP has registered an average of 10 cases of gender-based violence a day, including sexual assault and the rape of minors, an incident of rape occurs every two hours and an innocent victim is gang-raped every four to eight days.
Assad Iqbal Butt (vice president of HRCP) says that in most cases of abuse, relatives or close people are involved, due to which parents are reluctant to report these cases.
Iqbal Butt further said that the statistics about sexual abuse are patchy because many cases are not reported due to social taboos and fear of reprisal.He saidthat ‘parents should discussand give their child confidenceto share this act with them.’
According to theSahil, an NGO working for child protection and against sexual abuse, an average of 8 cases of child sexual abuse are reported daily across Pakistan.
Sahil reported 2,846 cases of child sexual abuse in Pakistan in 2019, with over half of the incidents occurring in mostly rural areas of Punjab. The year before, 3,832 cases were reported.
Out of the total reported cases, 62% were from rural areas and 38% reported from urban areas. Of the total children who were victims of sexual abuse, 53% were girls and 47% boys, according to non-governmental organization (NGO).
Accordingto a United Nations report, 15 million girls between the ages of 15 and 19 are raped worldwide. More than one million children in Asia are sexually harassed or targeted.
Rapists’ Psychology:
There are many types of men who commit rape. There are many opportunistic rapists who use any opportunity for sexual gratification.Another type is that of the abusive men who commit such crimes to humiliate and physically ridicule any woman. Many rapists do this out of revenge and that is why their hatred is aimed especially at women. Moreover, such criminals often find for themselves some kind of false evidence of their crimes, through which they satisfy themselves.
Reasons for the increase in incidents
The problem of rape in Pakistan is not only a matter of consideration but also needs a solution, the problems are increasing day by day due to the lack of punishment for the perpetrators of rape, in most cases the accused to get out of custody by taking advantage of faulty prosecution, especially investigation process which costs further lives of children.
Women remained the symbol of honor for any family in history. Hence, rape converted into a deadly weapon form heinous crime, from Neanderthals till time considering women ascommodity also provoked such heinous crime against females, and the rape remained an awful sign of victory, conquerors proved their victory by raping the women of defeated tribes and nations in history.
After the partition of sub-continent, the abducted women were exchanged under an agreement. It was a painful situation because the returning women were barely accepted by their families for fear of being stigmatized. It shows how fragile the status of women in society is and how strong the traditions of the patriarchal system are.
But now the situation is converting, children become the soft target for the rapists, not only in Pakistan, but all over the world. Raping a child and harass them to keep silent is easy way for them, while the weak prosecution and influencers involvement to resolve the issue also play an important role to promote such crimes.
How to resolve the issue of child abuse
According to psychologists, in order to diagnose the causes of any rapist’s crime, it is very difficult to determine the exact causes of this process and to determine the severity of these causes. However, a number of different psychological and medical studies have shown that rapists lack the ability to feel any physical or psychological distress, are almost as selfish as the disease, and especially aggressive sentiments against women are very common.
Psychologists say, “In many cases, sexual assault is not carried out to satisfy sexual feelings or to satisfy sexual interest, but to humiliate other people.” While sometimes we use to witness “many rapists and other sex offenders are young. They do this in order to improve their masculine reputation among their peers. Because it is very disturbing for them that they are sexually inexperienced in the eyes of their friends or close circles.”
Frequent incidents in Pakistan are causing unrest in the society, children are not safe even with blood relatives, and incidents of sexual abuse seems not less than a pandemic in the society due to lack of education and training.
Dr. Kamran Ahmad a psychologist says that parents ought to tell their children about molestation and behavior of elders in their home,educate them about their private parts, and provide them speech free environment so that they could speak about their suppressed complexes without any fear and hindrance. Moreover. A sociologists Dr. Prof Kauser Parveen says parents need to be extra careful when it comes to children. Such incidents are not likely to end suddenly, but the imposition of immediate and severe punishments could significantly reduce them.
Although in March 2020, “Pakistan’s first national child abuse law” was passed with a sentence of life imprisonment on a child abuse. Despite the existence of law the incidents of the same kind are difficult to control.
Because of the increasing number of sexual incidents with children, it is important for educational institutions, society, and parents, and guardians to educate children about their physical health, sexual functions, and risks and to prepare them mentally for dealing with dangerous situations. Child sexual abuse and exploitation deprives children of their innocence and their childhood, which is not only a legal issue but also a social issue. Similarly, it is important to take care of children in many important matters.
Furthermore, Sajjad Solangi; a criminal lawyer, writer showed his apprehension about the male members of the family even though father, brother himself may cause such abuse. There is plenty of reported and non-reported cases in the society, in which allegedly such members viz father, brother and uncle is shown taking benefit of his status in family to satisfy his lust. He further added that this is the gloomy picture of the society needs utmost attention and moral education to such mindset.
Despite all these facts, rape is an unforgivable crime, which, being a highly criminal act, requires the most severe punishment.

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