Pakistan: Senator Accused of Groping Minor amid Child Rape Wave
A lawmaker in Pakistan has been accused of “inappropriate touching of a minor girl,” reported the Dawn newspaper amid a series of child rape incidents across the Muslim-majority country.
His argument sparked “widespread anger on social media,” noted Dawn.
The alleged groping incident comes amid a wave of child rape crimes across Pakistan.
Citing the Islamabad-based NGO Sahil, which monitors child abuse in Pakistan, American news outlet the Media Line revealed, “There were more than 4,000 reported cases of child sexual abuse in Pakistan, or about 11 each day” last year alone.
Describing the alleged groping incident in a video message posted on Facebook, the Pakistani lawmaker noted that the young girl was speaking during an event sponsored by a few senators, adding:
[The alleged victim’s] speech about how she and her four sisters had lost their only brother had greatly moved the gathering, prompting many to cry.
As I stood up to speak, I invited her to stand with me, seeing her as my own daughter, while her tears were still flowing. I couldn’t stop my own tears and found it difficult to continue speaking so I said that this is such a situation that I could not make a speech and that I would rather sit down and continue.
Muhammad went on to blast his critics, accusing them of taking advantage of the incident to lambaste him.
Referring to his critics, he said, ”What kind of humans are these? They are not humans but beasts.”
Sen. Muhammad stressed that “the incident was misconstrued by people on Facebook and the media,” reported Dawn.
A lawmaker who attended the event where the alleged inappropriate behavior occurred—Sen. Shahi Syed from the Awami National Party’s (ANP)—came out in his colleague’s defense, saying that people had presented the incident with a “wrong angle”.
Echoing the alleged groper, Sen. Nisar claimed Muhammad had treated the girl no different than an affectionate parent would their own child.
A series of child rape crimes has sparked “revulsion around Pakistan,” indicated Voice of America (VOA), noting that a “serial predator” is suspected of being behind some of the crimes.
The suspected predator—believed to be Mohammed Imran—”raped and killed at least 11 girls in Zainab’s hometown of Kasur,” revealed VOA.
Among the crimes committed by the savage is the brutal rape and murder of 7-year-old Zainab Ansari whose body authorities found in a garbage dump.
On January 23, Pakistani law enforcement announced the arrest of Imran in connection with the series of rapes and killings, including Zainab’s.
He is not the only child rapist arrested by law enforcement in recent weeks.
Authorities have also arrested some men for raping boys, reported GEO News.
Referring to Ansari’s case, Al Jazeera pointed out, “A minor girl’s rape and murder earlier this month have sent a shock wave across Pakistan. The incident has drawn a wide public outcry, with many celebrities openly talking against child sexual abuse in the South Asian nation.”