Child sexual abuse: Punjab launches educational program for students

A symbol representing Child Abuse Awareness Month.  - Florida Today
A symbol representing Child Abuse Awareness Month. – Florida Today
  • The notification states, students have to be sensitized.
  • Teachers and school heads were asked to organize relevant lectures.
  • Students will be asked to avoid suspicious persons and sexual harassment.

In an effort to prevent child sexual abuse in the province, the Punjab government has decided to educate school children about incidents of sexual abuse in schools across the province, including Lahore.

This decision has been taken due to the increasing incidents of violence being targeted against children.

The instructions notified by the School Education Department have been issued to the educational officers in all the districts.

The notification states that students will have to be sensitized on the issue, while teachers and school heads should conduct lectures on preventing violence against children.

The department’s notification noted that children would be educated about how to avoid suspicious persons and sexual assault, while students in schools across the province would be asked for details about violence against children.

Child sexual abuse cases on the rise

Earlier this month, the Punjab Home Department shared that child sexual abuse cases are on the rise with more boys becoming victims of such crimes than girls.

A report compiled on the number of such cases from January to June 15, 2023, showed that in less than six months, 1,390 cases of child abuse were registered in the province – a frightening number in itself but made worse by further revelations.

According to the report, about 69% (959 cases) of the cases registered involved minor boys, while the remaining 31% (431 cases) involved girls.

Even more disturbing were the revelations of the perpetrators.

Furthermore, the report noted that 55% of those facing trial were neighbors of the victims, 13% were relatives, and 32% were strangers.

Regarding the city-wise prevalence of child abuse cases, the report said that the maximum number of rape cases in Punjab were reported from Gujranwala, where 220 cases were registered.

Rawalpindi and Lahore reported the lowest number of rape cases at 69 and 89 respectively.

In addition, DG Khan reported 199 incidents; Faisalabad 186; Multan 140; Bahawalpur 129; Sheikhupura 128; Sahiwal 127; and Sargodha 103.

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