Who Will Protect Teen Girls?

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Increasing cases of rapes, kidnappings, girls trafficking have now raised questions about girls’ safety in Nepal.

Where are those girls who are lost? Why are such cases increasing? Can’t girls walk freely in the street at midnight without caring about their safety? When do girls enjoy the freedom of walking freely without taking the fear of being rapped and kidnapped?

Teen girls are the target of such cruel predators who take advantage of girls, especially those with low financial backgrounds, working girls, etc.

Cruel and brutal predators are trapping girls. To get them in the trap, they manipulate girls with much different magnetism such as love, marriage, good life, material goods of modern living, etc. Once such allures work, girls and young women are in their nexus and are thrown behind the border by the disguised traffickers.

Girls are compelled to follow them to fulfil their dream, which they think will never achieve on their own, because of the low financial status of their family. They are tempted towards the dreams that those traffickers have shown just for manipulating them so that they will easily trust them and follow them. Girls are unknown about the trap and are only realizing it after being sold for prostitution. This trend has been a long-standing tradition in many parts of Nepal due to a lack of awareness and social backwardness. Also, sometimes because of girls in search of a higher standard of living.

Looking back, we can quickly remember several news and reports of girls missing, especially teen girls who had never returned home after leaving for school. Some of the prevalent cases are of Bhagirathi Bhatta, a 17-year-old girl who had gone missing earlier. Later, she was found dead after being raped. Nirmala Panta, a 13-year old girl, found dead after being raped, has not gotten justice until now despite the tremendous efforts of camping and advocacy to seek justice. The victim’s family had to go through a severe mental problem in such a situation. There is no compensation provided as such to her family, who has gone through such miseries of the irrevocable loss. The only thing that government can do is to give justice to the victim’s family and deserved punishment to the culprit. Suppose the number of such incidents continues to increase. In that case, the girls of every house will be the next Nirmala Panta and Bhagirathi in the days to come.

Born and raised in remote places of developing countries like Nepal, girls are obligated to carry the responsibilities. For the sake of their family, girls have a condition of doing or dying. They don’t feel shy about performing any work if they receive money because of obligation but not by choice.

Taking advantage of such miserable conditions of girls, their relatives are trapping them. The need and greed for money had made girls get trapped. If the respective society can conduct various skill-oriented programs to help girls financially and economically, it would make them more empowered to live respectfully. Not only the state but multiple bodies of the state are also responsible for the safety and security of teenage girls.

Easier access to various kinds of electronic gadgets and social media has increased more insecurities. There is a high chance of contacting the wrong people, which keeps their lives at significant risk. Cyber insecurities involved in blackmailing and threats are easily fascinated by what they see rather than finding reality. Copying the lifestyle of developed cities and countries and ambition to become famous and accumulation of wealth by any means has increased the vulnerability rate of becoming a victim of abusers and traffickers.

In gaining name and fame through social media, like Youtube and Tiktok, the teens are flaunting themselves in adultery videos these days. Inappropriate social media platforms possess a higher risk and threat. They first get involved in such activities and later get into the vicious trap of so-called fame and prosperity. They are even risking their life for getting such temporary fame. For the sake of views in their channel, So-called Youtube reporters are even forcing teens to get involved in such activities. This increasing craze of social media has increased more insecurities now.

The temptation of such fame has made teens’ involvement in such activities more rapid. In the name of collecting views and likes in their channel, so-called YouTubers are using teens so quickly, tempting them with fake fame for which teens can do everything these days.

The unemployment and ambition of girls are the main reasons those culprits are efficiently trapping girls who are then transported as a supply for prostitution in India and African countries.

Kidnapping and girl trafficking are the most despicable and demonic work such malefactors can perform. If the government lets these villains freely walk, that day is not far when a girl will not be allowed to step outside alone. With the easy release of such traffickers, such a heinous crime is on the rise.

The families of the victims and the country are terrified by the fact that 7,000 people have gone missing every year. According to the recent data, within a short period like three years, 27,433 only girls and young women have gone missing, of which only 10,962 have been found. Adding children and adolescents, this number is even higher.

On average, every 22 women are missing on a daily basis. Those are the data that had been registered on government files or being reported in the police station. Apart from this, many other incidents ranging from trafficking to abduction of women have not been registered in government records.

The family members of the victims have not been able to get justice due to the police’s refusal to take any complaint even after filing a complaint. Even if the complaint is registered, the criminals have access to the top leaders. The culprits are set free as they had a better connection with top political leaders. There are various kinds of social organizations which work for the safety and welfare of women and girls.

Those organizations that should work for the safety and protection of girls are found to be involved in such activities. There are lots of organization which was supposed to protect women. Still, instead of protecting women, the organization was found to be involved in criminal activities. Girls and women need to be trained on how to keep themselves safe and not get caught up in the misleading talk of anyone.

So, state and concerning agencies must be serious regarding such painful plight of teen girls. To wash out and eliminate such social stigma, the state should come into action. Simply the words of the constitution and statutes might not be enough to enhance the dream of a welfare state unless and until there shall be result-oriented actions in need and indeed.

Finally, let’s be united with solid solidarity. As a result, we can see our teen girls walking all day and night with safe and proud citizens of the country.

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