On January 4, 2018, an 8-year-old girl, Zainab Ansari, was abducted from a street in Kasur, Pakistan around 8 P.M. After numerous days of searching, her corpse was discovered in a dumpster of a nearby neighbourhood. After an autopsy, it was confirmed that she had been brutally raped and later strangled to death by her rapist. Since the incident, another national outrage has broken out over Pakistan.

Citizen out on streets with #JusticeForZainab slogans

Citizens and residents alike have started protesting and demonstrations are rampant. The message is clear – they want justice for Zainab.

The hashtag #JusticeForZainab has been trending on various social media platforms and has caught the attention of multiple prime time international media outlets.

The parents of the 8-year-old had gone to Saudi Arabia to fulfill their pilgrimage and left Zainab in the hands of her Kasuri relatives. The sudden disappearance of Zainab had pushed her relatives to approach local authorities; however, no extensive effort was made to find her as the police showed no concern. Seeing the lack of interest taken by the police, the community began a search and rescue operation, and after several days of hunting, they were able to locate Zainab's dead body.

"My relatives and neighbours told [me] that the police used to come, have food, and leave," recalled Ameen Ansari, the father of the victim.

"While they didn't do anything, my friends and family spent day and night looking for my daughter," he told the local media.

Protesters vs. Police

Protesters then stormed into local government offices and the police station demanding justice for Zainab, as the rapist had not been taken into custody. The angry protest eventually transformed into a violent scuffle, killing two people and leaving a dozen injured.

In a Tweet, government officials confirmed the arrest of a few of the police for opening fire on the demonstrators.

Jibran Nasir, lawyer and social activist, blames the federal and local governments for such incidents. He says, "The federal and provincial governments should revise the education curriculum and include topics on sexual abuse." He vows to take measures to empower children, and protect them from sexual advances and rampant pedophilia.

Rising paedophilia in Pakistan

Before Zainab, roughly 700 cases of paedophilia have been reported to the media and local police. Last November, 6-year-old Zainab Batool was kidnapped while coming back from a store, a few yards from her home. She was later found unconscious, with torn clothing and a bruised face, in a heap of trash at the local wholesale market.

Is there a fix?

In an international study conducted during 2012, Pakistan was ranked the highest in watching online pornography. Though officially banned, consumers received access via various VPN configurations. Evidently, sexual deprivation is the largest reason that the lives of young children, boys and girls alike, are being ruined.

So what's the fix? Who should we be protecting our kids from? Knowing how rapidly a disease like pedophilia is increasing in Pakistani society, and seeing how the police are least interested in these cases, who should the government appoint to control such an epidemic? Should local authorities with power be more attentive to these cases? Should local schools be more articulate when explaining topics related to sex? Overall, the sexually frustrated people of this country need to control their urges. They shouldn't be assaulting kids or destroying their youthful sense of security, just to satisfy their own taboo needs.