On Thursday, a man booked for rape and murder of a child in 2017 has been awarded the death penalty by a sessions court of Lahore. Bism Nazim has reportedly been handed two death penalties, life imprisonment and a Rs700,000 fine for committing of these inhumane crimes. In Pakistan, there have been various legislator efforts to protect children from abuse. Prime Minister (PM) Imran Khan recently proposed the death penalty for culprits of child rape.
The rapist in the said case was arrested from Lahore for murdering a seven-year-old child in 2017. He had been detained in Lahore’s Kot Lakhpat jail for the past two years after being arrested by the police from the scene of the crime, following which a case was registered against him in Sherakot police station.
Bism Nazim was arrested for raping and murdering a seven-year-old child in 2017 and had been detained in Lahore's Kot Lakhpat jail for the past two years.https://t.co/bJFb1ALTTh
— Dawn.com (@dawn_com) October 17, 2019
The state prosecutor providing an argument told the judge that witnesses and evidence against Nazim had been produced before the court. Additional session judge Sajawal Khan announced the death penalty.
Recently, Firdous Ashiq Awan, PM’s Special Adviser on Information, stated that PM Khan proposed the death penalty be fixed for all those involved in child abuse. The resolve was expressed during a meeting of the federal cabinet where deliberations over the rise in misuse of the internet for child pornography and a subsequent increase in incidents of child abuse were undertaken.
According to Awan, the PM addressed in detail the ministries of human rights, law and especially the interior ministry, and gave them the responsibility of examining, assessing and analyzing the existing juvenile laws regarding sexual violence, sexual exploitation, rape of children and other violent behaviors.
Read more: Sex education; tool to tackle rape
“All three ministries have been instructed to get together on this, prepare an implementation plan and bring it before the cabinet so that this growing menace can be curbed with an effective law and a mechanism of deterrence, as well as, awareness can be created,” she said.
According to a report issued by children’s rights organization ‘Sahil’, in September at least seven children were abused in Pakistan daily. The report revealed that from January to June in the current year, 1,304 cases of sexual abuse of children have been reported by the Pakistani media.
Prime minister Imran khan proposed death penalty for child abuse.Great decision and should be hanged publically. pic.twitter.com/E3PZSoAuXc
— Khazeema زainab 🇵🇰 (@Khizzuu_15) May 30, 2019
The report said that the data from January to June in 2019 reveals that 729 girls and 575 boys became victims of sexual exploitation. The cases under major categories included 378 of abduction, 139 of rape, 153 of sodomy, 46 of gang rape, 88 of gang sodomy whereas 12 boys and four girls have been murdered after sexual abuse.
In Lahore only, there were 50 incidents reported last year whereas nine children had been abducted and 12 reported missing from January to June 2019. The data from January to June gave grim numbers as it included five incidents of rape, seven of sodomy, three of gang rape and five of gang sodomy.
The most common perpetrator in cases of sexual abuse was an acquaintance with the victim or the victim’s family. Out of a total of 1,304 cases, 614 cases fell under this category. In all, 142 cases were reported in which strangers were involved in abusing children.
Experts believe that effective legislation is key to protecting children across the country. The current government is particularly focused on finding ways that may help to ensure the security of every child in rural as well as urban areas of Pakistan.