A 10-year-old boy in a southern Pakistani village of Bakhrani in Sindh province, has been fined $7,000 by a tribal court for having an extra-marital affair with a married woman in her 30s.
The reports quotes the chief police officer of the district, Umar Tufail, as saying:
“The 10-year-old was caught having an extramarital affair with a lady from another tribe, which created bad blood between the two tribes. The incident was later taken to a jirga (tribal court) which ordered the boy’s family to pay a fine of Rs700,000 ($7,000) to the aggrieved side.
The boy’s family paid Rs50,000 ($500) up front and undertook to pay off the remaining amount within three months.
It has came to our knowledge that a jirga was held to solve a dispute regarding an extramarital affair. We are looking into the incident as jirgas are illegal.”
In the Pakistani penal code, an adult male having sex with a female child is considered to have committed statutory rape, but the law does not apply in the case of a woman having sex with a boy.
Jirgas typically take the form of a council of male elders assigned to resolve disputes and have repeatedly come in for criticism for issuing controversial decisions, including forcibly marrying off young girls to end family feuds.
Pakistan’s Supreme Court had, in 2013, declared the jirgas illegal and asked provincial authorities to clamp down on them though they still persist in rural areas as a dispute settlement mechanism for people without the means to use regular courts.