Seminar on Child Abuse organized by Mahila Dakshata Samiti, Police Commissioner’s Office, Bangalore, 15.11.2014.

India ranks second among the top 5 countries with the highest rates of child abuse as per the survey conducted by the International Business Times, UK. It also says that India has seen an increase of 336% of child rape cases from 2001 to 2011 and imagined in just ten years, 48338 children are getting raped. And boys and girls equally were victims of sexual abuse. Child abuse is an act by caregivers or outsiders which endangers a child’s physical or emotional health or development. Child abuse can be physical, emotional, and sexual or neglect. Physical abuse occurs when a child is injured (bruises, cuts, burns, dislocations, bites or fractures) intentionally or by physically aggressive treatment. Emotional Abuse occurs when a child is rejected, threatened or frightened by calling names or put-downs. Sexual abuse occurs when a person uses power or authority over a child to involve the child in sexual activities. Neglect is the failure to provide the child with the necessities of life such as food, clothing, shelter, or medical attention. Boys are more at risk than girls with physical abuse, emotional abuse, and neglect; however, there are more girls sexually abused than boys. Children can be abused at any age. All forms of abuse are likely to result in emotional problems for the child, in particular, a lack of self-esteem and distrust of adults. The longer the abuse goes on, the more serious are the effects. Abused and neglected children are more likely than other children to be self-destructive or aggressive, to abuse drugs and alcohol, or become young offenders. Many adults who have been abused as children are also more likely to abuse their children and often experience difficulties in forming satisfactory relationships with other adult eg., Hitler and Stalin. Every child has a right to a safe childhood and a life free from violence. The experience of child abuse and neglect infringe upon that right. When child abuse is reported, first the safety of the child should be assured, and then the effects of trauma can be overcome or reduced through professional counselling or other supportive interventions.

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