As a result of China’s famous One Child Policy to reduce its ever-increasing population, Chinese men are now searching for brides from foreign land. In such a context, eyes have turned to Pakistan – China’s all-weather friend and instances of bride smuggling and further women abuse have come out in the limelight.
China and Pakistan’s engagement seems to go beyond economics and business as cases of minority women being smuggled out of Pakistan are gaining attention in Media.
According to the Zee News report, China’s one-child policy has pierced its gender ratio, which has resulted in a ‘trend’ of Chinese men seeing their potential bride in Pakistani women.
Most of the brides belong to Faisalabad, Rawalpindi, Gujranwala, Lahore, and Mandi Bahauddin areas.
The closeness of Pakistan-China and their socio-economic partnerships are registered around the globe. This partnership has enhanced the societal engagements, and Pakistan becoming a rescue to China at the cost of significant disadvantage and well-being of its society’s lower strata is heavily criticized.
The China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) seems to have enhanced the two countries’ engagement in all social areas, including people to people contact, encouraging marriages, often purely for economic reasons, the report claims.
Reasons for Bride Market in Pakistan:
The poor state of the economy and dire poverty is why many Pakistani girls are readily giving up on the bait of moving out of their own homeland to another country with cultural differences and completely different lifestyles.
Poverty has driven Pakistani women to get engaged to Chinese men willingly, but many reports of women are being trafficked to China as brides. It is a tragic trend that looks set to continue.
An evident reason for the continuation of the prevailing situation is a persisting gap in China’s demographics, coupled with wretched poverty in many places in Pakistan. The majority of the brides come from minority communities in Pakistan and many times the Chinese side has given exaggerated reports about their socio-economic status.
China’s One-child policy and its consequences:
The news of China’s one-child policy is known to the world for decades, and the preferences for a male child have driven the country into a state of disrupted gender ratio gravely and continues till the present day. The number of marriageable Chinese men outnumber women in the country by more than 30 million, as per the most recent estimates of December 2020.
China’s one-child policy, in force from 1979 to 2015, which permitted couples to have only one child; hence, many parents preferred to have a son. A son’s desire was driven by the expectation that sons would stay with, and support, their parents. Over generations, this policy and the consequent expectation has led to a demographic disaster in China.
According to the World Bank, the baffling gender ratio is one of the most heavily skewed in the world, with 106.3 men for every 100 women as of 2017.
One of the most significant fallouts of such conjugality is that women are unable to accept the Chinese way of life, and some reports claim that the women face mistreatment by their husbands and in-laws in China.
According to the New York Times, the Pakistani government has been looking out on brokers said to have arranged the marriages and arresting at least two dozen Chinese citizens and Pakistanis and charging them with human trafficking. Further, the Chinese Embassy has denied that Pakistani brides were being mistreated in China.
The Chinese government has always reciprocated in denial of the allegations or has simply ignored growing assertions about authorities’ complicity in these crimes. But the issue has now become a trend which is becoming too big to ignore.
The governments’ denial and ignorance are steadily being supplanted by criminal justice and propaganda responses, neither of which lead to a solution of the real issue of gender discrimination.