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6 year old girl raped by a rickshaw driver: Will the government respond?

A 6-year-old girl was recently raped by a rickshaw driver and left outside her house as the accused fled the scene. A whopping number of child abuse cases, coupled with slack justice system alerts, have plagued the country, urging immediate action.

abuse

A rickshaw driver picked up a female student from home and subjected her to sexual assault in an empty shop.

According to media reports, the rickshaw driver Gulzar Khan, instead of taking six year old daughter of Gulam Mehboob resident of village “chachu” near Tally Aly to her school in his rickshaw, got her seated on a motorcycle. On the way to school, he took her to an empty shop and allegedly raped her. The accused left her outside her house and fled the scene after her condition deteriorated.

Recently, KP Assembly presented a proposal to publicise the audio and video footage of rapists in child abuse cases being hung

This is another case in the line of numerous incidents of child abuse reported across the country in the face of insufficient efforts to control it. A whopping number of child abuse cases and slack justice system alerts have allowed the evil to swiftly permeate the country, urging for stringent action.

Publicize the hanging of rapists

Recently, KP Assembly presented a proposal to publicise the audio and video footage of rapists in child abuse cases being hung.

The committee convened a meeting presided by Minister for Social Welfare Hasham Inam Ullah. The recommendations with reference to amendments in child protection and welfare act-2010 were given final shape.

The committee said in its proposals that no remission will be granted in the sentence to be awarded to those convicted in child abuse cases. The audio and video of the execution scene of those awarded death sentence in child abuse offenses can be shown to people instead of a public hanging.

The committee has also proposed not to give any job in educational institutions to those found involved in the offense of harassing or sexually assaulting children.

Read more: Publicise videos of child abusers being hung, KP govt

The committee further recommended awarding sentences up to 14 years and fines up to Rs. 5 million to those involved in pornography.

The recommendations have been given, perhaps, to deter the potential predators that are unfazed by the existing law and punishments in child abuse cases.

Zainab Alert Bill

In a historic move, the National Assembly unanimously passed the Zainab AlertRecovery and Response Bill on Friday, 9th January. The bill introduced a multitude of measures to speed up the recovery of missing children and the conviction of child abusers in sexual assault cases.

It is anticipated to fortify Section 346-A of the Pakistan Penal Code that calls for the death penalty for the abduction of children under-14 leading to his/her murder or rape. Also, Section 376 of the Pakistan Penal Code calls for the death penalty in the case of the murder of a minor.

The bill is named after and approved on the second death anniversary of an eight-year-old girl, Zainab from Kasur, who was a victim of sexual abuse. Zainab was raped and found dead in the heap of trash in Kasur on 9th January 2018.

Federal Human Rights Minister, Shireen Mazari had presented the bill in June last year.

Read more: Zainab Alert Bill: Govt moves to protect every “Zainab” in the country

The bill proposes extremely rigorous punishment for the perpetrators of child sexual abuse rapists; stipulating life imprisonment in child abuse cases from a minimum of 10 years to a maximum of 14 years.

A helpline will also be established to report missing children while an agency will be set up to issue an alert for such cases.

The bill also proposes to take action against any police officer who delays investigations in such cases and fails to respond to an alert within two hours.

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