Child sexual abuse has become a repetitive issue to meet our eye on social media and mainstream media. Though there still are no significant measures taken in the sphere, the number of cases keep horrifyingly increasing. As per Sahil, the number of cases increased from 9 per day in 2017 to 12 per day in 2018 – speaking for our failure to curb the issue.
According to the findings of ‘’Cruel Number 2017’’, a total of 3445 cases of child abuse were reported from all provinces including ICT (Islamabad Capital Territory), AJK (Azad Jammu And Kashmir), GB (Gilgit Baltistan) and FATA (Federally Administrated Tribal Areas).
Cruel Numbers 2017 is research that reveals the frequency of child abuse reports using newspapers as a perimeter primarily.
Executive Director of Sahil says that in the years before 2017, the cases of sexual exploitation were reported in Swat, Jaranwala and Kasur. Hundreds of families fell victim and rose their voice for justice but were soon forgotten. As per the stats for 2017, 9 children were abused daily. The crime categories included missing children (where the number stood at 517), abduction (number: 1039), rape (number: 467), attempt at rape (number: 206), sodomy (number: 366), gang sodomy (number: 180), gang rape (number: 158) and 143 cases of child marriages.
In contrast to the year 2018, where the number of reported cases was 2322 for the first six months only. This speaks for the reported cases from all four provinces, Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT), Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) and Gilgit Baltistan (GB) included. The statistics are taken from newspapers, hence the actual figures can be a lot higher.
For the initial six months, the reported cases of abduction stood at 542, sodomy at 381, rape at 360, missing children at 236, the attempt of rape at 224, gang sodomy at 167, attempt of sodomy at 112, gang rape at 92 and 53 cases of child marriages.
The six-month data shows that out of the total reported cases, 1,298, the gender divide was quite shocking as well. 56% of the victims were girls and 1,024 (44%) were boys – showing while the women victims were more, the gender divide shows a very minor difference which means children are prone to the damage despite their gender.
In the year 2017, 109 cases were reported of murder after sexual abuse – that means 9% increase as compared to the year 2016. The gender analysis of the stats showed that 42% boys and 58% of girls have been murdered after subjecting them to sexual exploitation.
Among the 143 cases of child marriages, 89% victims were girls and 11% were boys. The provincial divide of the cases showed that the highest number existed in Sindh (63%). For Punjab, the percentage stood at 32%, 5 from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and 2 cases from AJK. 83% were reported in rural areas and 17% from urban areas.
For the first six months of 2018 as well, the most number of cases were reported from Punjab as well. The percentage was as follows: Punjab 65%, Sindh 25%, Islamabad 3%, KPK 3%, Balochistan 2%, 21 cases from AJK and 2 cases from GB. 74% reported cases came from rural while 26% were reported from urban areas.
It must be taken into consideration that the actual situation is far worse than this. Due to the stigmatization and sensitivity of the issue, not all cases make it to the newspapers or TV screens.
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