Jamaica Gleaner
Published: Friday | February 8, 2013
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Rights group calls for stricter enforcement of sexual-violence laws

India's government has failed to curb rampant sexual abuse of children, especially in schools and state-run child-care facilities, a rights group said yesterday.

The report from Human Rights Watch comes in the wake of the fatal gang rape of a young woman on a New Delhi bus in December, an attack that shook the conscience of the nation and forced people to recognise the problem of sexual violence.

The report said child sexual abuse is disturbingly common and government responses fall short in protecting children and treating victims. It also said the inspections of state-run child facilities were inadequate, with many not even registered with the government as required by the law.

"Shockingly, the very institutions that should protect vulnerable children can place them at risk of horrific child sexual abuse," said Meenakshi Ganguly, South Asia director of Human Rights Watch.

The group called for strict implementation of laws on sexual violence and better monitoring of child-care facilities. It also demanded more sensitive treatment by police, including an end to internal medical exams that it says are traumatic and pointless.

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