An alarming situation for young girls in Pakistan

The harrowing story of a 16 year old girl paraded naked in Pakistan had not even sunk in when yet another story of a seven year old girl Zainab who was kidnapped, raped killed and dumped in Kasur has caught the attention of the world towards this dangerous trend rampant in Pakistan. Shockingly this is the 12th incident of a girl being adducted, raped and killed in the past year in the district. Zainab’s murder has led to widespread anger on social media, where the hashtag #JusticeforZainab is one of the top trending topics worldwide.

Failure of state machinery, police unable to protect young girls

As per Geo news, the brutal rape and murder of seven-year-old Zainab in Kasur is not a one-off incident. As many as 11 cases of child sexual abuse are reported from across Pakistan every day, according to data collected by non-governmental organisation Sahil.  Even in Kasur which became the centre of a massive child abuse case in 2014 and 2015, the rape and murders of 12 minor girls, all aged between five to eight years, have been reported in the past twelve months. According to reports in the media, Aimaan Fatima, Fauzia, Noor Fatima, Sana, Asma and Laiba were among minors kidnapped from the suburbs of Kasur in 2017 and whose dead bodies were later recovered from different parts of the city.

Shocking reports reveal that in majority cases acquaintances responsible for such hideous acts

Another report suggests that of the total reported cases of sexual abuse in the first six months of 2017, 45 percent of the cases were committed by acquaintances, while another 17 percent of the horrific crimes were carried out by acquaintances and strangers. Of all cases, 15 percent of the crimes were committed at the victim’s own place, while 12 percent were said to have taken place at an acquaintance’s place.

What does this indicate?

A dangerous mindset plaguing Pakistani society is out in the open now. How can police protect girls from own family and friends? It is a pity that the girls in Pakistan are subjected to such heinous acts by no other but male members who they call family.

Atrocities on Women Continue in Pakistan

Few reports suggest that one in every five girls in Pakistan suffer sexual abuse.  Such atrocities on girls/women exist for long and reflect a dangerous mindset. Due to various factors women in Muslim countries are at the receiving end for the failure of a state as whole. Security personnel’s colluding with culprits is heinous and should be unpardonable. According to experts by the Thomson Reuters Foundation Poll, Pakistan is the second most dangerous country for women in the world. It cited the more than 2,000 women and girls murdered in “honor killings” every year and reported that 90 percent of Pakistani women suffer from domestic violence.

What makes it more difficult for women in Pakistan is that, should she speak up about physical or sexual abuse, she is seen as having lost her and her family’s dignity. For the same reason many rapes and sexual tortures go unreported as the victim fears she will become worthless in Pakistani society. According to  Farzana Majeed Baluch, a Baloch human rights activist,  human rights violations committed by Pakistan in Baluchistan and the army targeting Baluch women was as bad as the torture and rape of women that took place during the Liberation War of 1971. It is unfortunate that the Pakistani government is a puppet in the hands of military and the state machinery is a failure so the question is who will address the plight of these victims?

11 Jan 2018/Thursday