Children are the future of the nation and to build one’s future their present plays an important role. According toÂ UNICEF every year, as many as 275 million children around the world face domestic violence. Children may come in contact with the violence as a witness to, or victims of the conflict arising in their home. It can be described as an adult family member use undue influence and power to regulate the control over the child. The violence can be physical abuse, sexual assault, threats, injury, emotional and mental torture, exploitation and neglect or negligent treatment.
Things involved in child abuse
- Girls may face abuse for not being a â€˜maleâ€™ child of the family.
- Giving punishment that is inappropriate according to the age of the child.
- Doing inappropriate sexual behaviour with a child.
- Abusing or harassing verbally.
- Neglecting health and basic development which is the basic right of the child.
- Giving ill-treatment to the child.
- Using the Child for the completion of their ill motive.
Effects of domestic violence on a child
Any form of violence deeply impacts the overall development of the child. Children who are exposed to violence become fearful and anxious. They never feel safe and always carry the fear of what will happen next. Humiliation and embarrassment are what they feel all the time. They even lack the courage to tell anyone about the offence committed against them. Children are more likely to become abusive while following the footsteps of their abusive parents.
In long-term effect a child losses itâ€™s dignity. They may become habitual to such abuse and leave the thought of fighting back. They can follow the same steps as their abuser and display their actions on others. It is also the number one reason children run away from home. Children of such households where regular conflicts take place have higher risks of alcohol/drug abuse, post-traumatic stress disorder, and juvenile crimes.
Protection and Legal Aid
Though, India does not have a specific law that protects children against domestic violence, numerous other policies and indirect laws are made to tackle this heinous offence.
Following are the few policies and sections of various acts that protect the child against abuse and violence.
1. Trafficking and Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Women and Children, 1998.
2. National Charter for Children, 2004.
3. National Policy on Child Labour, 1987.
4. National Nutrition Policy, 1993.
5. National Policy for Education, 1986.
6. National Health Policy, 2002.
7.Under The Indian Penal Code, 1860
- Foeticide u/s 315 & 316
- Infanticide u/s 315
- Abetment to commit suicide of minor u/s 305
- Kidnapping and Abduction u/s 360 & 369 respectively
- Selling and Buying of girls for prostitution u/s 372 & 373 respectively
- Rape u/s 376
8. The Juvenile Justice(Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2000
9. The Prohibition of Child Marriage Act, 2006
10. Child Labour (Prohibition and Regulation) Act, 1986
11. The Immoral Traffic (Prevention) Act, 1956
12. Protection of Children Against Sexual Offences Act, 2012
Child abuse in India often unrecognized as offence especially when it happens at the home or by the family members. Assuming that child is sole property and duty of the parents, due to which they can missus their power is wrong. It is childâ€™s right and needs to have safe, secure and growing family environment in order to get a healthy development. Â It is better to distinguish the line of child abuse and giving him punishment to regulate the childâ€™s action, before proceeding further.
In light of regulating your childâ€™s behaviour and in order to teach him good manners always keep in mind that your process should not exceed and become violent in nature.