Another beyond-horrific incident of sexual violence has been reported—Charsadda police have revealed that they found the body of a two-and-a-half-year-old girl Zainab, in the Jabba Korona area in the limits of Daudzai police station of Peshawar on Wednesday. She appeared to have been assaulted and tortured before being killed.

There are hardly any words to capture how heartbreaking this incident is. The incident draws striking similarity to the 2018 rape and murder of 8-year-old Zainab Amin in Kasur, a case where another girl child was reported missing and then found dead with evidence of sexual assault. Despite the huge outcry the 2018 case had caused, it seems unfortunate that Pakistan is still an unsafe place for women and children. Hundreds of similar incidents occur every month, a few catch national attention and outrage, a few laws which are not implemented properly or seem to not have an impact are passed, and the public sentiment is one of executing the culprits, rather than mapping out long-term ways to make the streets safer for women.

Perhaps it is time for the government to sort out its priorities. For now, it seems more focused on moral posturing- needlessly banning and censoring any media it deems “immoral”, even when that media is showcasing just women doing normal activities. Women taking a part in public life is not immoral and should not be censored—indeed, doing so can further encourage the harassment of women. Stricter punishments, which seems to be the government’s easy way out, can only work if the perpetrators are caught. So far, the Lahore Police have been unable to catch the prime suspects in the month-old Lahore-Sialkot Motorway rape case. More action is needed by the government, which needs to step up and show that it is a government for the women of this country as well as the men.