According to Sahil (a non-governmental organisation working for the protection of children), a total of 4,253 cases of child sexual abuse were reported in 2022 in Pakistan. 1
These child sexual abuse cases were reported from all four provinces of Pakistan, including Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT), Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) and Gilgit-Baltistan (G-B).
The data shows that there are cases of child sexual abuse, abductions, missing children and child marriages.
Based on the statistics, the number of abused children in Pakistan is estimated to be more than 12 per day. The breakdown by gender shows that of the total reported cases of child abuse, 2,325 victims were girls (55%) and 1,928 (45%) were boys.
The report shows that child sexual abuse cases have increased by more than 33% compared to 2021.
The data showed that in the list of perpetrators of child sexual abuse, the most common were the acquaintances and family members of the victim. Sahil also found that out of the total 4,253 cases, the perpetrators were acquaintances or relatives of the victims in 1,864 cases. In 786 cases, it was strangers who committed the abuse.
In 2022, the reported cases of sexual abuse fell under the main categories of abduction (1,656 children), rape (422 children), sodomy (537 children), gang rape (75 children), gang sodomy (156 children).
There were a total of 2,123 cases of child sexual abuse, with both boys and girls equally affected. The total number of cases of homicide following sexual abuse was reported as 81. There were also 1,834 reported abduction cases, of which 178 were sexual abuse following abduction.
Among the numerous incidents, there was one case in which five boys and as many girls were murdered following gang sodomy and rape. In addition, 39 boys and 29 girls were murdered in 2022 after being sexually abused.
According to the data, a total of 428 cases of missing children were reported. In child marriages, 46 cases were reported, including 45 cases of girls and one of a boy. Three cases of vani (forced child marriage as punishment) were also reported.
According to the data, children aged six to 15 years were the most vulnerable to child sexual abuse, with more male than female victims reported. In addition, children up to five years of age were also sexually abused. There were 1,405 cases where the age of the victim had not been reported.
The geographical distribution of the data showed that of the total 4,253 cases, most were reported in Punjab. However, cases of child abuse were also reported in all other provinces. Of the total, 2,271 cases (53%) were reported in urban areas, while 1,982 cases (47%) occurred in rural areas. According to the report, 89% of the total reported cases were registered with the police.
A total of 546 children were abused in their own homes, 833 in the perpetrator’s house, 24 children in a haveli, 55 children in a madrassa, 29 children at workplaces and 713 children in open places such as fields, roads, graveyards, canals and forests.