The arrest of three men for alleged sexual assault of a teenage boy tells us that the issue of child sexual abuse is not going anywhere soon. The frequent arrests of people for abusing children show that the issue of child abuse is widespread in the district Kasur. Does the government realise the severity of the problem? And what role is media playing in this regard? Sadly, once the culprit is caught, both the government and media wash off their hands of this crisis. However, such a response is inadequate to the menace of child abuse.

Both the government and media need to understand that their response to the issue is nothing but merely putting out fires without making any improvements. The need is to recognise that the issue of child abuse is not limited to Kasur only. The menace of child sexual abuse is widespread in our society. According to SAHIL, an organisation working on children protection, over ten children had been abused daily in Pakistan in 2018 alone.

It is unfortunate that despite the government’s announcements of introducing stricter punishments, the child abuse cases surface regularly. The regular reporting of such cases means that harsher sentences are not the best deterrent, as many may think. Coming back to Kasur that has become a dark pit needs constant and active government action.

True, there is no simple way forward to curb this menace. The solution needs to be multi-pronged. First, the state must come up with legislation having no loopholes. Second, there is an urgent need of initiating a public dialogue against the issue at hands. Third, national curriculum needs to be redesigned to better educate children about the issue and its various forms. This way, the society and state by pointing out the fault lines and working together can fix the problem of child abuse.