A Year After The Sex Scandal at Islamabad’s International Islamic University, There’s No Follow Up Or Justice For The Victims Of Sexual Abuse!

by
Sameera Ehteram
It has been more than a year since the news of female students and staff at a University in Islamabad, Pakistan being forced to offer sexual favors in return for grades and demands of their immediate superiors broke.

International Islamic University

It has been more than a year since the news of female students and staff at a University in Islamabad, Pakistan being forced to offer sexual favors in return for grades and demands of their immediate superiors broke.

The acting President of the institute at that time, Sahabzada Sajidur Rehman and the librarian who was under suspicion, have now moved to new jobs where they may or may not be back to their old ways. There’s no way of knowing.

Not much also came out of the case itself as in Pakistan most cases get forgotten rather than solved. There’s hardly any follow up. What’s more societal and in many cases the legal pressure isn’t placed on the perpetrator, instead its borne by the victim who is forced into backing off, hushing up and even at times changing their statement of facts.

Recently there has been a case of a university student allegedly raping and killing minor girl in the same city.  But unfortunately, case may come and go. Victims are forgotten, their relatives silenced, their cases buried under piles of newer and grimmer stories.

In December last year for instance a young boy, Shahzeb was murdered in cold blood as a result of a fight between him and a land lord’s son. Though Shahzeb himself was the son of a police officer, his murderers have given the law a merry chase just because of their influence and high stature. There’s no doubt his case would have met with the fate of thousands others had it not been for his family and friends who have managed to kept his memory and fight for justice alive online.

A young woman was injured in an attempt of being kidnapped in an upper end mall of Karachi. Her abductors belonged to an influential family. The story, though hardly a few weeks old is already dimming in people’s minds.

That is one more problem faced by the society at large in Pakistan, especially in the big cities where newer, graver events keep taking place and replacing the old ones. The dust settles on old cases and they get forgotten, nay, replaced by fresher ones.  The result is a massive amount of un-dealt with death and mayhem and a feeling that you can do anything wrong and get away with it.

People have little or no respect for authority as they know they can easily be overstepped and its only a matter of dealing a bigger card and flashing influence. The result is dozens of cases reported every day and then forgotten.  Though every life is sacred and every act of oppression and injustice is dreadful on its own, the case of an educational institute and its personnel getting away with something like this is horrendous. In a country like Pakistan where education for women is a big issue, higher education is indeed a privilege few can enjoy. With cases like these, it only means more trouble and more hindrances for women looking to stand up on their own and especially those, who want to get an education.

In the meanwhile, things go on as they do. Unfortunately news of death and mayhem is so common that it does not affect people too much, until it strikes too close for comfort. But all the while, the societal structure keeps de-generating a chip at a time.

Will things ever change in Pakistan? Will the justice system see an over-haul? Will people learn not to forget so soon? These are questions that the people of Pakistan will need to answer and answer soon.

Carbonated.TV