Free Press Journal

Actor-cum-philanthropist Rahul Bose takes up the fight against sexual abuse of children 

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We all know him for his stellar performances in movies like Mr & Mrs Iyer, Chameli, Jhankar Beats, and more, and Rahul Bose recently proved his filmmaking mettle with his gritty and powerful directorial venture Poorna. The actor-filmmaker conveyed the story with much conviction which garnered him appreciation from his audience and critics alike.

However, there’s one more side of Bose which not many maybe aware of. Though we know that he speaks strongly on the social issues, Bose is also a crusader against the fight of sexual abuse of children. In India, over 53.2% of all children experience one or more forms of sexual abuse before they turn 18 years old. That is one in two!

Bose says that it’s the children’s’ innocence that the abusers take advantage of. “Child sexual abuse more often than not comes from adults who are trusted by children. Abusers manipulate children and either silence them or convince them that no one will believe them,” Rahul says, adding about how we are getting rid of the disgrace around sexual abuse.


“Stigma is rooted in our patriarchal mindsets. With lack of comprehensive education around body, sexuality and health, people find it difficult to talk about sexual abuse or even how to prevent sexual abuse. Now-a-days parents and teachers are taking the responsibility to address bodily safety with their children. This is change. Adults are educating themselves on having age-appropriate conversations with children about safety. The risk of sexual abuse has always existed and it can be addressed by simple steps like talking to children about the safety rules,” says Bose who recently was a part of the 3rd edition of Annual Stakeholders’ Conference on Child Sexual Abuse (ASCCSA).

Also Read: We should be inspired by Iranian cinema, says Rahul Bose

In India, the onus of preventing sexual abuse is always thrown on the victim. But how can children avoid sexual abuse especially from people whom they trust? “It should not be the responsibility of children to stop sexual abuse. But given the prevalence of the issue, they can be taught the safety rules at home and school. When children are young, we teach them the correct names of their body parts like lips, nose and so on.

How many of us teach them the correct names of their private body parts and tell them they are private? If we give children the language to address their private body parts, we automatically open a channel of communication. Further, if we reinstate that their private body parts cannot be touched by anyone without their permission and respect these rules ourselves, children will know instinctively know two things when around a threat of sexual abuse. One, that it is wrong and it’s not their fault. Two, that they can share it with their trusted caregiver,” he suggests.