Story of Seema

The incident took place one evening in September 2013. A seven year old girl was so busy playing with her friends that she even refused to go out with her mother to the market. Her friends and she were on the terrace and at some point her friends went downstairs for something and so Seema followed them. After descending a few stairs she was suddenly pulled inside a room. The man who pulled her inside was her neighbor living on the first floor of her building. Before she could comprehend what was happening, he locked the room, tied her hands and feet with ropes, and warned her to keep her mouth shut. He also threatened to throw her off the terrace if she resisted or tried to fight back. He then molested the small girl.

After the incident, the man left, leaving the girl in immense pain. When her mother returned, the girl was in a poor state with her face completely swollen. Her mother kept asking her what had happened, but the girl kept silent and just asked her mother to help her sleep. Seema remained awake the whole night, experiencing nightmares and in terrible pain. Despite being questioned by her mother, this continued for 2-3 days .Seema never shared the main reason for her pain but just said that she had pain in her private parts. Finally after her mother’s repeated insistence and questioning, the girl took her to the room where she was sexually abused and pointed towards the man. She then narrated the entire incident to her mother.

When her school teacher came to know about this incident she approached HAQ: Centre for Child Rights, and a team went to meet the victim’s family. The team met the girl in the hospital where she was admitted for her treatment. The girl was experiencing emotional trauma and looked very scared. HAQ provided regular psychological counselling to the girl and also provided legal support.

Six months after the incident had occurred; the girl and her mother gave their complete statement in court. The case proceedings are still ongoing and the accused has been apprehended and is currently in jail.

The regular counselling sessions with HAQ’s counsellor helped the girl to cope with and overcome the trauma she experienced. She is now emotionally stable and has been able to resume normal social interactions with her friends without being fearful.