ISLAMABAD: Commissioner for Children, Federal Ombudsman Office, Shaheen Atiq Ur Rehman on Friday proposed that Deoxyribonucleic Acid (DNA) should be linked with National Data Base Authority (NADRA) for curbing ratio of crimes in the country.
Zainab sexual assault case was not the first one reported, rather a number of issues related to child sexual abuse were reported in past but no conviction was made, she said.
“In past a massive issue of 65,000 pornographic movies of children was highlighted on which Federal Investigation Agency initiated investigation but no report was appeared”, the commissioner said.
She was addressing a high level meeting conducted at Wafaqi Mohtasib Secretariat on the systematic Issue of Child Abuse in Kasur.
The meeting was called to prepare a National Action Plan to protect children from any kind of sexual, physical, psychological issue and ensure a safe and conducive environment for our younger generation.
Senator S M Zafar, Chairman National Commission on Children sharing his remarks on internet conferencing urged to establish National Commission on Rights of Children (NCRC) at the earliest.
He said there was a dire need of police sensitization and training as they were the first ones to handle issue of reported crimes. He said awareness among parents to report missing children immediately was imperative so that their children could remain safe from any untoward situation.
“Only recovery is not important but protection of children is necessary”, he remarked. S. M. Zafar also asked for separate allocation of budget and funds for children issues annually so that mechanisms can be established to facilitate people at grassroots level.
Senator Rubina Khalid, Chairperson of the Task Force on Transgender, pointed out that it was the responsibility of state to bear cost of DNA in case of sexual abuse case as the victim family could not afford the huge cost of it.
“According to my information, currently victim’s family is asked to pay cost of the test but they are not able to pay Rs. 30,000 to Rs. 50,000”, she said.
Senator Farhat Ullah Baber on the occasion demanded that year 2018 should be declared as “Year of Children”. He asked for compiling credible data on crimes.
“United Nations has asked Pakistan several times to prepare consolidated data on all kinds of crimes against children including Swara, child abuse, child marriages, child abduction, murder etc. but nothing has been done yet.”
He said a catalog should be prepared clearly mentioning nature of crimes, areas, age groups of victim children etc. so that concrete steps could be taken accordingly.
Chairperson National Commission on Status of Women, Khawar Mumtaz shared that a sustainable strategy was imperative to root out this menace from our society. She added that as the DNA was mandatory in child sexual abuse cases so it should be responsibility of the state.
She also informed that NCSW had established a core group engaging all stakeholders working on child rights issues including civil society, Human Rights Activists, to work out a quick response mechanism.
She also asked for establishing more forensic labs in the country and endorse establishment of NCHR at the earliest.
A representative of United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) informed the meeting that they were working on case management child referral system.
Additional Director Interior Ministry, informed the meeting that unfortunately around 45 million children were living below poverty line who were more vulnerable. He said ample legislation had been done on rights of children but now the issue is implementation.
“Almost 30 to 40 percent population of the country are living below poverty line and unless their issues are not focused particularly, the vicious circle could not break”, he remarked. - SAMAA/AGENCIES