This is with regards to the many instances of abuse that have been surfacing recently particularly those faced by women. Ranging from the age of 40 to as low as 6 years of age, females have long been the subject of abuse, be it sexual (work-place as well as domestic) physical or emotional. While eve-teasing which has nothing to do with the way a woman is dressed as even some fully covered woman are subjected to this menace, it’s something that women have turned a blind eye and ear to. The admittance of being abused is still a taboo topic in our society where the victim is often subjected to further humiliation while the predators strut around free without any fear of being apprehended or brought to justice!

Unfortunately groping, eve-teasing, rape, unwanted advances cannot be blamed entirely on the lack of education and literacy for that matter. It’s the general belief that the perpetrator will get off sought free that allows such incidences to occur. Whilst the work of organizations like WAR(War Against Rape), Aurat Foundation and many other NGOs dedicated towards educating women on unacceptable practices is commendable the cry for help is still being subdued by the echoes of shame, helplessness and fear. It’s my heartfelt appeal to three institutions to take steps to provide help wherever needed firstly the government should ensure safety for females of all ages particularly in crowded malls and streets where such perpetrators are likely to hunt. Secondly, school administrations (for both genders) need to include counseling and guidance on the subject of abuse and lastly but most importantly parents must ensure more vigilance especially when patterns in a child’s behavior changes and it is observed by teachers or parents.

Children should also be taught how to take necessary precautions and measures like staying away from strangers, avoid talking to strange men and reporting any suspicious activity so that our future generations can at least have the assurance that their cry for help will not go unheard and unanswered unlike those of many before them.

AMNA BILLOO,

Karachi, January 16.