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Need for serious action against child abuse

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India is a country of young people. Yet, the prevailing laws do not recognize this fact. And going by the books, it seems as if there are no child-specific issues in this country. We don’t have uniformity in the definition of a child in different laws. Nor do we have too many laws that recognize the special requirements of children and the need to address issues specific to children.

I recently had an opportunity to carry out an in-depth study of issues relating to child abuse. While, the experience proved humbling for me, the conclusions were outright shocking for me.

And at the end of my research work I did find that child sexual abuse is an evil which is increasing rampantly and more and more number of children are proving to be a victim of this. Child rape, molestation, child pornography and other forms of child sexual abuse are much evident and visible in our society. But since no strong action is taken, culprits are roaming free and independent leaving the victims in a traumatic condition.

Weaker role of government is the major reason of this increase and much stronger laws are needed in order to minimize this issue. But government alone can’t be blamed for the same. Parents and family members also play an important role in this increase. Due to social stigma they don’t file or report these issues and this encourages the wrong doers.

In the matters of incest it has been found that children’s are abused repeatedly due to ignorance and silence of parents. Long court procedure, improper functioning of police authority , rise in pornography and lack of awareness among children are other contributing factors .

Laws implemented by government are with flaws and loopholes and these pits should be filled as soon as possible. Moreover awareness programs should be conducted to make children and their parents aware about child sexual abuse. Parental guidance is also needed. We need to talk about Child sexual abuse at home. We need to first start acknowledging that it exists and that it is increasing. To begin with, Child sexual abuse is rarely reported and those who indulge in it get away with it more often than not.

In our society where boys and girls are not given the independence to mingle socially, repression results in perpetrators selecting victims they can target easily, and who are also accessible rather too easily- children. From their own homes. We need to start talking to our kids about basics like what is good touch, and also bad touch in much the same manner that we tell them about the traffic safety rules.

Unless we stop brushing it under the carpet and putting family honour before the welfare of the child, unless we start showing the courage to report any Child sexual abuse that we come across and confront child abusers, even in our own homes, Child sexual abuse in homes will not only continue but would also increase and our children will continue to grow up scarred.

For the victims, proper counseling should be done and more number of counselors should be appointed. These children should not be isolated from society rather they should be treated with more care and affection in order to prevent them from long term effects. Proper compensation should also be provided and it should be made sure that no cases should close due to insufficiency of a family.

At last, I reached the conclusion that just like any other evil issue, this issue also can’t be solved in a day or two. It is serious issue and the whole nation is suffering from it. We need to first start acknowledging that it exists and that it is increasing. To begin with, Child sexual abuse is rarely reported and those who indugle in it get away with it rather easily. In a society where boys and girls are not allowed to mingle socially, repression results in perpetrators selecting victims they can target easily, and who are easily accessible- children. From their own house.

We need to start talking to our kids about basics like good touch, bad touch in much the same matter of fact manner that we talk to them about traffic safety rules. Unless we stop brushing it under the carpet and putting family honor before the welfare of the child, unless we start gathering the courage to report any Child sexual abuse we come across and confront abusers, even in our own homes, Child sexual abuse in homes will continue, increase and generations of children will grow up scarred.

This increase is a wakeup call for the law making bodies at society at whole to come out from their house, discuss the matter and collectively cooperate each other to end this issue of child sexual abuse from its root. If the nation does not react now and the silence predominates, it can seriously damage those innocence bodies that are yet to blossom.

Zaid Imam

Zaid Imam is a student of NUSRL, Ranchi. He writes regularly for The Avenue Mail. He may be contacted at zaidimam08@gmail.com.
Zaid Imam

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