Resolution against Child Abuse

469

Aresolution calling for the public hanging of offenders con victed for sexually abusing and murdering children was passed in the National Assembly on Friday with a majority vote. It was moved by Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Ali Muhammad Khan who indeed deserves appreciation for being very vocal on important issues such as this one. However what is surprising is that not only some opposition members but the sitting Ministers strongly opposed the public hanging of the convicts with some terming it contrary to international laws whilst others declaring it as a barbaric act. In our view, those playing with the life of our young souls do not deserve any mercy whatsoever. A beast who has no regard for human values needs to be given such exemplary punishment so that nobody in future could dare to commit such despicable acts. Such public hangings are in vogue both in Iran and Saudi Arabia and that is why the crime rate there is very low. Already in our country, the cases of child abuse are on the rise with many go unreported. According to a report released by Child Rights Organisation Sahil in September last year, 1,304 cases of sexual abuse of children were reported by the media in the country from January to June. This means that at least seven children are abused every day. Therefore, our elected representatives should not give any impression that they harbour any soft corner for these abusers rather they should take steps that avert such incidents in future. Given the current situation, we therefore recommend that this resolution be made part of the recently passed Zainab Alert, Response and Recovery Act. Apart from strict implementation of relevant laws regarding child abuse, it is also important that society is made aware of the presence of paedophiles in neighbourhoods and for this need the Ministry of Human Rights must launch a comprehensive campaign to raise awareness about this issue at the level of school.