Child Sexual Abuse

1 in 2 children are
sexually abused in
India. That’s 50% of
the population

Despite this overwhelming statistic, Child Sexual Abuse (CSA) is a silent epidemic that people are afraid to talk about.

 

The Rakshin Project aims to prevent abuse, by empowering the youth to break through the silence, stigma, shame and denial.

What constitutes child sexual abuse?

According to the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act (POCSO) 2012, all the following actions are criminal and will be punishable by law as child sexual abuse:

  • Penetrative Sexual Assault: Insertion of penis/object/another body part in child’s vagina/urethra/anus/mouth, or asking the child to do so with them or some other person
  • Sexual Assault: When a person touches the child, or makes the child touch them or someone else
  • Sexual Harassment: passing sexually coloured remark, sexual gesture/noise, repeatedly following, flashing, etc.
  • Child Pornography
  • Aggravated Penetrative Sexual Assault/ Aggravated Sexual Assault

Where does it happen?

Child Sexual Abuse is an epidemic in this country and occurs in all parts of India, among all classes of society. Study on Child Abuse in India (Ministry of Women & Child Development, 2007) reports that Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Bihar and Delhi reported the highest percentage of sexual abuse among both boys and girls, but the responses from all the sampled 13 states were more or less similar and led to the following statistics being recognised.The National Study on CSA (2007) at a Glance:

  1. 53.18 % children in the family environment not going to school reported facing sexual abuse.
  2. 49.92% children in schools reported facing sexual abuse.
  3. 61.61% children at work (Shop, factory or other places) reported facing sexual abuse.
  4. 54.51% children on the streets reported facing sexual abuse.
  5. 47.08 % children in institutional care reported facing sexual abuse.
  6. 20.90% of all children were subjected to severe forms of sexual abuse that included sexual assault, making the child fondle private parts, making the child exhibit private body parts and being photographed in the nude.
  7. 50% abusers are persons known to the child or in a position of trust and responsibility.

What can we do to prevent Child Sexual Abuse?

There are three key steps in preventing child sexual abuse in our society, and The Rakshin Project by Sakshi aims to do just that.

1. Learning about Child Sexual Abuse
Understanding the issue and familiarising yourself with the statistics and occurrence is the first step towards a society free of this evil. Equipping yourself and others around you to be aware of the possible signs of sexual abuse, repercussions and reporting procedures of Child Sexual Abuse. Educating ourselves and others around us will help us minimise incidences of child sexual abuse from taking place. The more people are aware of the issue, the more people can be a part of creating a preventive environment.

2. Breaking the Stigma & Silence
The shame, stigma, silence & denial surrounding all things sexual in the country discourages disclosures and reporting of cases of child sexual abuse. It is important therefore that we break this silence and speak up about the issue that is affecting 1 out of 2 children in India. The Rakshin Project by Sakshi has created the hashtag #IWillTell which you can use to share your experiences and thoughts about the issue to raise awareness over social media platforms.

3. Joining the Movement
The Rakshin Project by Sakshi is working towards creating a social tipping point in India to move towards eradication of child sexual abuse. Each individual citizen who joins the movement is adding to this collective goal and bringing us closer to a society where the constitutional rights guaranteed to every adult and child by our country become a reality.

Child victims themselves or their friends, parents,  relatives or guardians can report cyber crimes by pressing the e-box button available at the Commission’s website,  www.ncpcr.gov.in.

They can also register their complaints on

E-mail ID : mailto:pocsoebox-ncpcr@gov.in or Mobile No.: 9868235077.

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