A woman and her alleged paramour were shot dead by her stepson in Sindh’s Larkana district on Saturday, in what police suspect is an incident of ‘honour killing’.
According to police, the man shot dead his step-mother, 36-year-old Latifa, and a man he suspected her of having illicit relations with, Zubair Ahmed Sianch, 38, in Mohenjodaro Colony of Ratodero and later surrendered himself to the local police.
Station House Officer Ratodero Qalandar Bux Soomro told IPP t the accused had “confessed” to the crime and revealed that he had killed his mother and the man after doubting her “character”.
The bodies of both victims were handed over to their relatives after postmortem examination.
The police is investigating the crime from different angles,” the SHO told reporters.
No first information report of the incident had been registered till Saturday evening.
Honour killings continue despite new laws
Scores of women in Pakistan are still being murdered by relatives for bringing shame on their family, more than a year since new laws came into force aimed at stemming the flow of ‘honour killings’.
The shocking murder of social media star Qandeel Baloch, allegedly by her brother in July 2016, turned the spotlight on an epidemic of murders in the name of honour and sparked a fresh push to close loopholes allowing the killers to walk free.
In October 2016, the joint sitting of both houses of parliament passed two key pro-women bills that had been pending assent for a long time.
The move at that time was cautiously hailed by women’s rights activists. More than a year on, however, lawyers and activists say honour killings are still occurring at an alarming pace.
At least 280 such murders were recorded by the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan from October 2016 to June 2017 ─ a figure believed to be underestimated and incomplete.
The legislation mandates life imprisonment for honour killings, but whether a murder can be defined as a crime of honour is left to the judge’s discretion.
That means the culprits can simply claim another motive and still be pardoned, according to Dr Farzana Bari, a widely respected activist and head of the Gender Studies Department at Islamabad’s Quaid-i-Azam University.