Socially boycott those sexually abusing kids: Satyarthi

Hyderabad: People who sexually abuse children should be named and shamed besides being socially boycotted, Nobel Peace Prize winner Kailash Satyarthi said today.

The noted child rights activist said the law enacted to protect minors from sexual offences is not being properly enforced.

“Finally, I would say that people who are responsible, may it be the family members, may it be an outsider, who turn predators, have to be socially boycotted. They should be named and shamed,” he said.

The girls who become victims should get respect as they are not responsible for the abuse against them, the 63-year- old activist said.

“The girls who are the victims should get respect because they are not responsible for that. Unfortunately, in our society, the girls are stigmatised and that should not happen,” he said.

“Because, no girl, who is a victim, loses her dignity or her honour. It is those people (perpetrators of such crimes) who lose their honour and they should be boycotted from society,” he told PTI on the sidelines of an event.

Satyarthi, who was in Hyderabad as part of his ‘Bharat Yatra’ against child sexual abuse and trafficking, said the “age old mindset” of victims and their families living in fear should change.

The 2014 Nobel Peace Prize winner said he is involving faith leaders to promote awareness on the issue as they have a huge following.

“The laws which are there have to be properly implemented. There is a strong law Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO). That is not being properly enforced,” Satyarthi said.

“Last year, 15,000 cases were registered (under the Act).

(There was) only 4 per cent conviction, 6 per cent acquittal and 90 per cent pendency. It will take 10 years to 40 years in different states to dispose of those cases. So, that has to be changed,” he said.

The governments, media, educational institutions, industry and others need to come together to raise awareness on the social evils of child sexual abuse and trafficking, Satyarthi said.

“The government, popular media, cinema and of course, social media…especially nowadays, should take the lead in it. So, the media has to play an important role,” he said.

Speaking at an interactive session with industry representatives, Satyarthi said the corporate sector can bring about technological solutions to put an end to child abuse and trafficking.

He took part in a march and a public meeting, attended by political leaders and social activists, at Nampally here.

Satyarthi was felicitated by the Telangana government on his visit to the city.

Addressing children who were present on the occasion, he said they should ask their parents to be friends with them and to speak out on any abuse against them.