Domestic Violence and Children

(Muneebah Sohail Fakhar, Karachi)

A scenario in which one spouse seeks to impose control and authority over the other is referred to as domestic violence. The abuser may employ a number of tactics to establish control over the victim. Abuse of any kind, including physical, psychological, financial, and sexual abuse, as well as attempts to control the victim through his or her children, are all part of it. The abuser may also try to persuade the victim not to seek help from others. Several studies have looked into who is more prone to be abused in the home. A power and control imbalance is the most common symptom. Domestic violence survivors and offenders, on the other hand, do not fit neatly into one of two groups. They might be of any age, ethnicity, financial status, or educational attainment level. Domestic violence can be triggered by a multitude of causes, including seeing or being a victim of abuse as a kid, assaulting previous partners, being jobless or underemployed, poverty, or living in deplorable circumstances. Depending on the type of domestic violence, it can have physical, psychological, sexual, or financial consequences.

Childhood is seen as vulnerable to exploitation, especially given the media's significant role in the marketing of children's commodities like toys and games. Children are viewed as weak whether it comes to abusing or protecting them. More research on children who have been abused has led to the conclusion that children's views and understanding of abuse have developed through time

The foundation for creating childhood is formed by children's welfare, children's rights, and children in a social context. Children's well-being is a concern, and policy and law aimed at promoting and protecting children's welfare in society are continuously evolving. The Sustainable Social Development Organization's (SSDO) third six-month report emphasises the country's concerning situation regarding the government's failure to prevent child abuse and abuses of women's rights. According to the study "Tracking Numbers: State of Violence Against Women and Children in Pakistan," there was a substantial rise in child and women's rights violations incidents from July to December 2020, compared to the first half of the year, January to June 2020. The number of instances of violence against women and rape more than quadrupled in the latter six months of 2020. Similarly, compared to the first half of the year, the number of child abuse cases increased thrice in the second half. Punjab has the highest number of reported incidents of child abuse, followed by Sindh and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

Zainab Ansari- Kasur, Zainab disappeared on 4 January and her body was found five days later in a rubbish dump.

Police said there had been several similar child murders in the past two years in Kasur but her killing proved to be a tipping point.

It triggered widespread outrage, including protests complaining of police incompetence. Two people were killed in clashes.

KARACHI: As many as 358 children — 252 boys and 106 girls — became victims of child abuse in Sindh between 2014 and 2019, it emerged on Sunday.

A recent police study about child abuse cases in the province showed that girls found to be more vulnerable between ages of 1-5 and 16-18 while boys found to be more vulnerable between ages of 6-10 and 11-15.

It said that the police registered total 349 cases and arrested 408 suspects across the province during the five-year period.

The police presented charge sheets of 257 cases before the courts concerned, 70 cases were cancelled while 17 cases remained untraced. Out of 257 cases referred to the courts, 17 cases ended up in conviction compared to 132 cases in which accused earned acquittal. Around 117 cases were still pending for trial, the study said.
Zainab's family said the police did not take action during the five days from when she was reported missing until her body was found. Relatives, not police, recovered CCTV footage of her last movements.

The footage, which showed a girl being led away by a man, was circulated widely on social media. The hashtag #JusticeForZainab later went viral, with many Pakistanis calling for action.

On 23 January, 24-year-old Imran Ali was arrested through a DNA match. He was sentenced to death in February for Zainab's rape and murder.

His appeals against the verdict failed and earlier this month President Arif Alvi rejected a plea for clemency.

Most cases reported in Karachi
According to figures, total 116 children became victims of abuse in Karachi from year 2014 to 2019. Out of them, 96 were boys and 20 were girls.

The police arrested 86 suspects, presented charge sheets of 68 cases, cancelled 28 and showed 16 untraced in the provincial capital. The courts awarded punishments in three cases and acquittals in nine cases. At present, 56 cases were pending trial.

In Thatta district, 26 children, including 17 boys, became victims of child abuse. The police arrested 38 suspects, presented challans of all 26 cases. The courts awarded conviction in two cases, granted acquittals in 17 cases while seven cases were still pending trial.

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03 Sep, 2021 Views: 440


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