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Govt should declare bacha bazi a crime: Samar

Govt should declare bacha bazi a crime: Samar

Jan 05, 2014 - 20:59

KABULinfo-icon (PANinfo-icon): Concerned at expanding culture of pederasty, the Afghanistaninfo-icon Human Rights Commission (AHRC) on Sunday asked the government to declare the practice a crime and punish those involved.

The rights watchdog has launched a nationwide investigation into bacha bazi or play boy. The commission says the practice has become tradition and it should be eliminated.

The rights body says not punishing those involved in the practice has been a reason behind the increasing culture of bacha bazi.

AHRC chief Seema Samar told a gathering in Kabul that bacha bazi was an un-Islamic and inhuman act, saying there had been an increase in the tradition.

Non-implementation of laws and abject poverty contributed to keeping the tradition alive and expanding it, she said.

She said rights of the victims were mercilessly violated and their personalities assassinated in the societyinfo-icon.

Samar said children subjected to bacha bazi later did the same to other children, thinking they were taking revenge from the society.

She said boys were most possibly subjected to sexual harassment after they were dressed in womeninfo-icon’s clothing to perform dance to male audiences, an act amounting to assassinating their personalities.

She said if the practice could not be fully eliminated, it should be declared a crime and measures should be taken to decrease it.

Samar said government organisations, civil society groups, the media and every human rights campaigner should come forward and play their part in doing away with the stigma.

Labour and Social Affairs Minister Amna Afzali also said the tradition should be punishable by law. She believed the ongoing conflict and abject poverty had been reasons behind the increasing trend.

Special Juvenile Court head Huma Alizoy said bacha bazi had been on the increase since 2002 and had become a tradition of show of power.

She said such elements when entered a function with boys were given more respect and served better meals because they were considered powerful.



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