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Saturday, April 13, 2024

Honor killing in Sindh: Woman stoned to death, confirms post-mortem report

Wazeera Chachaar, a resident of nearby Wadda Chachaar village, was stoned to death, confirms the medical report. Wazeera’s father alleges that her husband brutally killed her.

A post-mortem report on the body of a woman allegedly stoned to death in Jamshoro district has confirmed that severe torture was inflicted on her, which led to her death. According to the report, the alleged stoning victim had a fractured skull with her neck and facial bones broken, which severely affected her brain. This is another brutal case of honor killing in Sindh.

Moreover, there were severe injuries all over the woman’s body, according to the autopsy which was conducted 12 hours after her death. It concluded that head injuries resulted in her death.

According to the police, on June 27, the Motorway Police found a mutilated body of an unknown woman with severe head injuries from the Indus Highway in the limits of Police Station Chachaar.

The Motorway Police referred the matter to the Police Station Chachaar, where the deceased was identified as Waziran Chachaar, a resident of nearby Wadda Chachaar village.

Police immediately contacted the husband of the deceased Ali Bux Chachaar and father Gul Muhammad Chachaar and sent the body to Syed Abdullah Shah Medical Institute, Sehwan for postpartum.

Read More:  Karo-Kari in Sindh: A Practice Related to Honor That Has No Honor in itself

Surprisingly, the relatives of the deceased woman, including her father and husband, initially avoided the police investigation and registration of case and wanted that a road accident be declared the cause of death. Later, both the father and husband alleged each other of killing the woman.

Honor killing in Sindh: A Case of Karo-Kari?

Sources claim that this murder is a case of Karo-Kari which is premeditated honor killing widely practiced in rural and tribal areas of Sindh. Any men or women involved in pre-marital or extra-marital relation is considered the enemy of the collective conscience and the concerned family is expected to take the life of the person in order to restore the honor or reputation.

Official statistics reveal that from January to June 2019, there have been 78 cases of honor killing. Some cases have been registered but in many cases, investigations are pending due to cultural as well as structural challenges.

The Inspector General-Sindh, Dr. Kaleem Imam, has been placing a special focus on the practice of Karo-Kari and taking all possible measures to ensure the safety of vulnerable segments of the society.

He also reportedly directed the officials concerned to ensure that there must not be any loophole left in the investigations and the same was also adequately pursued before courts.

However, police generally find it difficult to investigate such cases due to cultural reasons. “Honor killing is a social problem and has its roots in the tribal culture and a mindset where women are seen as subservient to men,” said DIG-Headquarters Abdul Khaliq Shaikh.

GVS approached Ms. Asma Yunus, Assistant Professor of Sociology at the University of Sargodha, and asked her about the context in which Karo-Kari takes place. She thinks that, “Karo Kari is driven by a complex interplay of factors like patriarchy, feudal culture, complicit role of the state institutions and law enforcement agencies, and a web of vested sociopolitical interests”. While pointing out the role of education to maintain the status quo, Ms. Asma says “our social structure especially educational institutes are highly dominated by patriarchy and every component of education, from the syllabus to the academic environment, corresponds with the old age customs and traditions of patriarchy”.

Read More:  Honor killings: Pakistan’s continuing shame

In contemporary rural Sindh, argues G-M Pitafi, Lecturer at the University of Management and Technology, Karo-Kari has become a tool for economic exploitation of the rival. “Tribes use females from economically underprivileged families to target their rivals. The one who is blamed for having an illicit relationship with a woman has to pay money and immediately leave the area,” he said.

In some cases of honor killing in Sindh, it goes out of control and leads to the killing of both man and woman, he added. Local administration along with leaders of the tribes is, argues Mr. Pitafi, a part of the entire process. Therefore, these cases are on the rise.