Rape, child molestation and subsequent actions by authorities

(Maheen Orfi, islamabad)

In August 2017, reportedly the biggest abuse case in Pakistan’s history was unveiled regarding a child pornography ring with approximately 400 videos of over 280, yes I repeat, 280 children being molested. This also occurred in Kasur, the place of Zainab’s rape and murder. Before Zainab, 11 other isolated cases of molestation took place but were not taken notice of.

The child pornography films were sold for 50 rupees in the Hussain Khanwala village of Kasur and to pedophiles in the West for high prices.

The main perpetrator of this child pornography ring was arrested. He was later released for 5 million rupees.5 million rupees, which is 50 lakh. A man who deserves worse punishments than the human mind can come up with, a man who ruined the lives of 280 children, freed for 5 million rupees. Was this the price of the lives, dignity, and faith of those innocent souls? Souls so pure, that at first, they couldn’t even have comprehended what was being done to them. Was this the price of taking away their faith in humanity forever?

After molesting them, this organization had the audacity to use the tapes to blackmail the victims and their families for money. Their temerity was, of course, fueled by the confidence that authorities will not apprehend them. And they were, to a large extent, correct in their assumption. In some cases, children stole from their parents to pay off the blackmailers in an attempt to keep their cruel ordeal a secret. This is the heartbreaking truth of our society. A boy cannot say out loud that he was forced to perform homosexual acts without the fear of becoming a social pariah and a laughing stock for life. A girl tells her mother that she was raped, and her mother keeps it a secret from fear of her little girl never being wed, from fear of the fact that society will condemn her for being out alone, for wearing provocative clothes. Her character will be judged despite her being the undisputable victim. Here, the victim covers up the crime while the criminal roams unafraid. The few valiant enough come forward with their cases are predictably the victim of public scrutiny, if not disgrace. If they choose to rely on our judicial system for justice, they are forced to spend money and time on countless hearings which keep being postponed. If the criminal is somehow miraculously prosecuted, he is let out after a pitiable bribe. The number of abusers who have received their lawful punishment in the last decade can be counted on the fingers of one person. The ones appointed to apprehend criminals are themselves complicit.

Today I heard a political analyst say that to lessen the number of such cases we have to create awareness through education, education regarding child abuse and self-defense. He said schools should hold compulsory courses regarding these issues. This suggestion, no matter how good, will be unimaginable to some and laughable to the rest. In this society topics like sexual abuse, child molestation and marital rape can never be addressed publically without the speaker being called vulgar and un-islamic. The ulemas and Islamic leaders in our country that condemn rapists in press conferences after an abuse case gains public attention will be the first to condemn and place fatwas on the mere mention of such educative courses being introduced.

People like you and I, all we do is use social media to subject our follows to long litanies about how heartbroken we are, how utterly helpless we feel. But really, the question remains. What can we do? Everyone will have a different answer to this, or maybe a variation of the same answer. But we do nothing, nothing changes and people still suffer. And this is the reality of this world we live in.

 

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10 Jan, 2018 Views: 228

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