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WARNING: The following content may be sensitive for some readers. Please proceed with caution.
A video of a girl being abused has gone viral on social media. The woman can be seen screaming at and assaulting a little girl, who seems to be working at her house.
This video is just one of thousands that are circulating on social media. Domestic violence is a very common issue in Pakistan. An article by Parveen Azam Ali (University of Sheffield, United Kingdom) and Maria Irma Bustamante Gavino (Aga Khan University School of Nursing, Karachi, Pakistan) states the following:
“In Pakistan, domestic violence is considered a private matter, as it occurs in the family, and therefore not an appropriate focus for assessment, intervention or policy changes. Women have to face discrimination and violence on a daily basis due to the cultural and religious norms that Pakistani society embraces. According to an estimate, approximately 70 to 90% of Pakistani women are subjected to domestic violence.
Various forms of domestic violence in the country include physical, mental and emotional abuse. Some common types include honor killing, spousal abuse including marital rape, acid attacks and being burned by family members. Spousal abuse is rarely considered a crime socially unless it takes an extreme form of murder or attempted murder which could range from driving a woman to suicide or engineering an accident (frequently the bursting of a kitchen stove).”
That is not the only issue in this video. Despite provincial and federal laws that prohibit child labour, the video clearly shows a girl not more than 10 or 12 years old working in a household. It wouldn’t be a stretch to say that child labour is so common in Pakistan, it has become part of society’s culture.
As responsible Pakistanis, it is our job to make sure that everyone in our country (children or women) leads a secure life. Raise your voice, otherwise don’t expect others to do the same for you.