K. Male'
06 Apr 2024 | Sat 17:03
Maldives Police Service (MPS)
Maldives Police Service (MPS)
AA. Rasdhoo child assault case
Rasdhoo child assault case: legally required efforts being made by police
The child was assaulted by two other minors; aged 13, 14 respectively
A team of police officers is active on the island
Strict action will be taken against those involved in such activities within the society

The Maldives Police Service (MPS) is making the necessary efforts required by law, regarding the case of a child being assaulted in Rasdhoo island of Alif Alif atoll.

This was revealed by Minister of Homeland Security and Technology Ali Ihusaan.

A video that began circulating on social media platforms on Friday took the country by storm, after the case of a child being assaulted inside the washroom area of a mosque, made the spotlight.

The video shows a cornered child being threatened and assaulted by two other minors who appear to be just a few years older than him, aged 13 and 14 respectively.

A third is behind the camera, however, their identity remains unclear.

The child is heard crying and begging them to stop, as they continuously punch him on the face, kick him in his privates and snatch the water bottle he is seen holding before pouring it over his head. He is then made to kneel and “beg” them to stop the abuse and humiliation.

Infuriated members of the public have since flooded social media with posts calling for strict action against the perpetrators.

The case was brought to the attention of the police institution, and it has since been revealed that the case is being investigated as a “serious” issue.

Minister Ihusaan revealed that authorities are trying to find the perpetrators and bring them to justice, as soon as possible.

He also assured the public that strict action will be taken against those who indulge in such inhumane activities within the society.

The minister added that authorities have identified the 13-year-old and 14-year-old boys seen threatening, assaulting, humiliating and bullying the child.

MPS is currently doing everything legally required in connection with the case.

Since the disturbing scenes in the video are difficult to watch and also violate the dignity of the victim, MPS has urged the general public to refrain from sharing and circulating the video any further.

The police institution has also confirmed that they are coordinating with the relevant authorities, to provide the required psychosocial support for the victim.

A special team of relevant authorities is currently active on the island. The team comprises of officials from MPS, the Ministry of Social and Family Development as well as the Department of Juvenile Justice.

The case has also been submitted to the Human Rights and Gender Committee of the People’s Majlis. The case was lodged by Chairperson of the committee, MP for Hinnavaru constituency Jeehan Mahmood.

Speaking to RaajjeMV, MP Jeehan said the committee will convene for a meeting on the day parliament resumes, at the earliest.

With the government holidays and Eid-Al-Fitr holidays ongoing, the next sitting of the People’s Majlis will be held after Eid.

MP Jeehan noted that even though Majlis sittings are paused for the holidays, the relevant documents will be exchanged and that the committee has decided to look into three main issues. As such, the committee will be probing if the victim is being provided the necessary psychosocial support by relevant authorities, as well as ensuring his protection and providing all the required assistance and support to him.

Further, the committee stated that since the perpetrators of the crime in the case were minors, it was necessary to understand the rules and procedures followed by the state in this regard.

Since the case involves children, the committee will be seeking if other stakeholders responsible including parents, are being held accountable, and what is being done to serve justice as mandated by the Juvenile Justice Act.

The committee will also look into the government’s efforts to ensure such cases do not recur, and assess if they are implementing these efforts adequately.

This case has swept a wave of fury and grief among communities across the nation, with several taking to social media platforms calling for strict action and justice. Noting that such cases leave the victims cowering in a pit of trauma, the public has been stressing that such abuse and trauma have a massive impact on the mental health of children. Thus, they have been stressing on the importance of serving justice and punishing the perpetrators, even if they are minors, and that these “future criminals” should not be left to continue inflicting harm on others.

Several other such cases of impunity have been brought into the spotlight in the past, and there have been rising concerns over the lack of justice.

Last updated at: 1 month ago
Reviewed by: Fathimath Zuhaira