Bacha Bazi: Afghan Child Prostitution

By Naiwrita Sinha, Gaea News Network
Wednesday, April 21, 2010

LOS ANGELES ( Frontline: The Dancing Boys of Afghanistan, a show that aired in PBS recently, explored the horrific tradition of the bacha bazi, or the ‘boys play’ when it is translated from Urdu. The show explored the horrors faced by the boys involved in one of the dirtiest of businesses in the country, in which young boys, some as young as 11, are sold for sex and entertainment of the rich and the powerful in the country. Of course, the customers are all men. What comes across as most horrific is the fact that the business, which directly feeds of the heinous practice of pedophilia and child prostitution, thrives in the country.

As was mentioned in the show, the children in bacha bazi are bought by powerful politicians, wealthy businessmen and former warlords, from poverty stricken families. Often, they are also destitute and orphans, who are picked up from the streets. The most horrific part of the bargain was told by one of the boys present in the show, about 16 years old at present. He had been abused as a child, and was turned out by his family who blamed him for the incident. Having no other option, he went back to his abuser, and now lives with another man who has taught him to sing and dance.

The story is the same for many others involved in the disgusting practice of bacha bazi. The children are taught to sing and dance, and are then bought by those who can afford to pay their master. Then, they are sold all over again, and the cycle continues.

Filed under: Entertainment

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