Oct. 11 - Rights organizations say child abuse is a huge problem in India and the government should improve protections for children. Deborah Lutterbeck reports.
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Rights groups warn of a landscape of abuse in India as they describe hardships faced by women and girls.
Earlier this year, Human Rights Watch called on the Indian government to do more to protect children from sex abuse.
Human Rights Watch's South Asia Director says many cases of sexual abuse are not reported.
(SOUNDBITE) (English) SOUTH ASIA DIRECTOR AT HUMAN RIGHTS WATCH, MEENAKSHI GANGULY, SAYING:
"Largely we find that even when there is sexual abuse, quite often there is a tendency not to say. Part of it is stigma; part of it is because there is dependency. Quite often the victim doesn't - if the perpetrator is someone more powerful, they are very worried about reprisals. This can be in a sexual abuse system in the home, it can be a sexual abuse situation in orphanages, in residential care facilities."
It's not just sex abuse that children need to fear.
(SOUNDBITE) (Hindi) GIRL, VICTIM OF CHILD ABUSE, SAYING
"They used to keep me in a big dark closed room. They used to make me do all the work. Whenever I asked them for food, they would never give me anything to eat. And when I said I want to go home they would beat me."
Rights groups say about 11 million children live on the streets in India, the highest number in the world -- and far too many face abuse along with neglect."
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