The father of a boy, who according to the father committed suicide after he was sexually assaulted last year, walks in an alley outside his house in Mumbai, India, April 26, Picture taken April 26, Inspector Balwant Deshmukh, the investigating officer, said police have all but given up hope of finding out who raped the boy. But the emergency order, known as an ordinance, did not mention boys, although a government survey has showed that male minors were more likely to be victims than female minors.
The ordinance lapses in six months and the government has to introduce legislation to convert it into law. At that time, the government plans to broaden the statute to make it gender-neutral, said a senior government official who declined to be named. In the meantime, the minimum punishment for raping a boy is 10 years in jail, compared with 20 years for assaults on girls under Rape victims and their families cannot be identified under Indian law.
Some activists working for the safety of children say outrage over the gruesome gang rape and subsequent death of a young woman in New Delhi in succeeded in raising awareness about sexual violence against women in India, but far less attention is paid when the victims are male. A survey by the ministry of women and child development, which sampled 12, children in families, schools, at work and living on the street, found that more than half had faced sexual abuse, and 53 percent of victims were boys.
For the capital Delhi, the figure was 60 percent. The government has not done any similar survey after that, although some activists and police say many cases of sexual abuse of boys go unreported because of the stigma attached to homosexuality. Students shout slogans during a protest against the rape and murder of an eight-year-old girl in Kathua near Jammu, in Srinagar, April 16, The government, nevertheless, last month ordered a study to be undertaken focusing on sexual assaults on boys.
A year-old man in the western city of Pune, who said he was repeatedly raped by a man for two years starting when he was five, reported his ordeal to his parents only a year ago fearing he would be judged.
I did not want to anger my mom. Some researchers say parents often shy away from reporting abuse of boys, in the hope that victims would eventually overcome the psychological trauma. He declined to immediately share their contact details, saying it was a delicate matter for them.
An article published last year in the Indian Journal of Psychiatry highlighted those attitudes. An unidentified father who was resistant to psychological care for his nine-year-old son after he had been raped, was quoted by the journal as saying: He should behave like a man, not a sissy. Subramaniyan, a senior psychiatrist in a Bengaluru hospital who co-authored the report, said she was in touch with at least eight adult men who were sexually assaulted as boys but never reported their ordeal to police.