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Total of 157 women kidnapped, 112 cases of physical assault reported across Pakistan in June: SSDO

Significant increase in rape and domestic violence against women

Kidnapping and physical assault of women and children is alarmingly high in Pakistan as the number of cases reported in media regarding rape, domestic violence and child labor have showed a continuous increasing pattern, especially in Punjab, followed by Sindh.

According to research by the Sustainable Social Development Organization (SSDO) and the Centre for Research, Development and Communication (CRDC), the most reported cases in June 2022 in the mainstream media have been of kidnapping of women, physical assault, rape and domestic violence against women.

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Kidnapping of women was reported most heavily in the media, with a total of 157 cases. A total of 108 of these cases were reported only from the province of Punjab. Sindh reported 22 cases, followed by six from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP), four in Balochistan and 17 from Islamabad.

A total of 112 cases of physical assault against women were reported in media all over Pakistan. The highest number of cases (66) were reported in Punjab, 27 in Sindh, 11 in KP and eight in Islamabad; whereas no cases were reported in Balochistan.

There is a significant increase in cases of domestic violence, reported in June (100). Out of these, 68 were in the Punjab, the highest among all provinces. A total of 17 cases were reported in Sindh, 13 in KP whereas Islamabad reported two cases. No case of domestic violence was reported from Balochistan.

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Rape of women also saw an increase in numbers, with 91 being reported in the media. Punjab reported the highest number of cases of rape (53), followed by Sindh with 14 cases, 16 from KP, six from Islamabad and only two from Balochistan.

The lowest prevalence in media reporting was of workplace harassment and honor killings; seven cases each were reported for both in the country.

Amongst all indicators of violence against children, the highest prevalence was of child abuse, with a total of 93 cases being reported across the country, with Punjab leading with 36 cases reported, followed by KP with 28 and Sindh with 18. The lowest number of cases were reported in Islamabad (six) and Balochistan (five). A total of 64 children were kidnapped and 37 were physically assaulted across Pakistan. In the previous month, there were no cases of child labor and child marriage reported but in June, there were five and seven cases reported respectively.

SSDO Executive Director Syed Kausar Abbas stated, “The aim of regularly publishing this data is to bring attention to the rapid increase in violence against women and children.” He added, “The number of cases increased in this month as compared to the previous month. We hope that with increased media attention and reporting, the government, police and judiciary dedicate their attention to the speedy processing of cases, their resolution and punishment.”

SSDO and CRDC conducted daily tracking of several mainstream newspapers considering nine indicators of violence against women and children. The selection criterion of the newspapers was based on being the most famous, accessible and most-read newspapers in Pakistan. This data is published every month on SSDO’s official website, while both organizations also publish a consolidated report annually.

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