Country needs comprehensive child protection system: Specialists

KARACHI: Senior child specialists and members of KONPAL-the organisation for protection and promotion of child rights have urged the authorities to develop and implement a comprehensive child protection system in the country.

Chief Coordinator, KONPAL, Dr Ayeha Mehnaz talking to APP Monday said concerned departments have already been offered proposals for fool-proof systems viz a viz protection of children at home, schools, neighborhoods, institutions etc.

“All we need is a strong will and commitment to address the issue with severe physical and psychological implications on the victims in particular and people in general,” said the child specialist.

Taking strong exception to recent instances of molestation of girls she said such crimes and violence against children are extremely shameful, horrifying and disgusting.

Dr Fehimina Arif, another senior pediatrician alongwith Dr Nusrat Shah, a known gynecologist had their reservations about the role of electronic media in projection of these news stories.

“It is extremely heart wrenching to witness absolute disregard for associated sensitivity and the plight of the victims and their respective families,” said Dr Fehmina.

The doctors were of concerted opinion that all stakeholders, particularly parents and caretakers needed to be sensitised about simple and effective measures to protect children from all forms of abuse, violence and exploitation.

In reply to a question they said quality health with specific reference to compliance to hygiene and cleanliness is also a basic right of children that is largely overlooked causing their vulnerability to morbidity and even mortality causing ailments as diarrhea, respiratory tract infections, typhoid etc.

Dr Nusrat particularly emphasised that repeated pregnancies and large family size, have in themselves emerged as serious threats to protection of children against abuse.

“How can you expect a frail, anaemic and stressed mother to ensure proper care of her four to eight children with little age difference at a time,” she said.

The doctors urged the media to contribute towards promoting healthy recreational activities, with equal attention towards character building among growing children and youth, instead of stuff causing frustration and triggering emotions into lust.