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Pakistan Observer - - FRONT PAGE -

in­tro­duc­ing read­ing ma­te­rial for par­ents and teach­ers on how to keep chil­dren out of harm’s way Pun­jab has now pre­pared a book­let aimed at ed­u­cat­ing chil­dren how to pro­tect them­selves from pae­dophiles. ‘ Se­cure Chil­dren Strong Pak­istan’ book­let will be dis­trib­uted amongst chil­dren up to the age of ten years through their re­spec­tive schools. The eight- page doc­u­ment not only con­tains train­ing ma­te­rial but also iden­ti­fies re­spon­si­bil­i­ties of par­ents and teach­ers for pro­tect­ing the chil­dren.

In­deed in the wake of re­cent hor­ren­dous in­ci­dents such as that hap­pened in Ka­sur, Mar­dan and other cities, it was re­quired on the part of re­spec­tive au­thor­i­ties to do the need­ful to pro­tect the chil­dren from sex­ual abuse and mo­lesta­tion. Though child abuse or mo­lesta­tion is con­sid­ered a taboo sub­ject in our so­ci­ety but there is no doubt that this curse is wide­spread and play­ing with the life of our chil­dren. Some cases come in the media while most of them re­main off the screen as in most cases the young souls feel shy about ad­mit­ting to have been mo­lested. So there is un­for­tu­nately no way to know the true fig­ure of child mo­lesta­tion that would be shock­ingly higher. Re­al­is­ing the threat to chil­dren, it is mat­ter of sat­is­fac­tion that Pun­jab gov­ern­ment has taken a lead by pre­par­ing ma­te­rial on an im­por­tant mat­ter that in­deed will go a long way in pre­par­ing the chil­dren to stay safe by keep­ing away from the lure of such peo­ple. We also ex­pect that other pro­vin­cial gov­ern­ments will also fol­low the suit and come with up with nec­es­sary ma­te­rial that im­part needed ed­u­ca­tion to the chil­dren against pae­dophiles while keep­ing in mind the level of un­der­stand­ing of chil­dren that en­cour­age them to re­port any threat to their par­ents and guardians with­out any shy­ness. In ad­di­tion, it is also im­por­tant pro­vin­cial gov­ern­ments make it in­cum­bent upon the pub­lic and pri­vate schools to in­tro­duce spe­cial classes that im­part self- de­fence tech­niques to the stu­dents. While it is re­spon­si­bil­ity of par­ents to keep an eye on ac­tiv­i­ties of their chil­dren es­pe­cially when they are us­ing com­put­ers and cell phones, it is also time for the Cen­tre and pro­vi­sional gov­ern­ments to take req­ui­site steps to hunt down all such cul­prits or rings and also bring­ing down on­line child and other pornog­ra­phy fo­rums. The PTA should ban such sites. through one of those tense con­fronta­tions, that erupt ev­ery now and then in the United Na­tion’s an­cil­lary bod­ies, can­not but have come away with any­thing but praise for the ded­i­cated band of in­ter­preters that ser­vice the World Body. The best of these in­ter­preters will not only trans­late the text of the speech but also faith­fully con­vey the mood and in­to­na­tion of the del­e­gate tak­ing the floor. This en­sures that the at­mo­spher­ics are not lost in trans­la­tion.

The year was 1977 and the oc­ca­sion the an­nual ses­sion of the United Na­tions Hu­man Rights Com­mis­sion. ( As

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