Lahore: Women’s Action Forum condemns the brutal killing of Farzana Parveen by her family members in the name of ‘honour’ in front of the police and other by standers right outside the Lahore High Court where she had gone to record her statement in favour of her husband.
Farzana had married a man of her choice against the wishes of her family as a result of which her family attacked her outside the Court premises, inflicting injuries fatal enough to result in her death.
We demand that the killers be brought to justice and the police officers who were silent bystanders be punished for aiding and abetting the crime through their inaction.
People like Farzana ‘s family need to be made an example of and given the severest punishment for taking the law in their own hands. Women like Farzana suffer at the hands of this patriarchal system which has tied their honour to a woman’s body; where she cannot live the life of her choice and if she claims her right to freedom she is severely punished. The women of Pakistan demand the right to life, liberty and freedom with dignity.
Murder as well as bodily harm is treated primarily as a crime against individuals rather than as a crime against the State and governed by the legal provisions of Qisas and Diyat (retribution and compensation). The law provides a statutory right to the heirs of the deceased or injured person(s) to pardon the perpetrator, ask for compensation, or demand retribution. Moreover, It exempts some relations from mandatory imprisonment sentences, although the Court has the discretion to sentence the accused to imprisonment depending upon the facts and circumstances of the case.
Women’s Action Forum strongly demands from the government to:
(a) Consider honour crimes as a crime committed against the state to end the impunity currently enjoyed by the perpetrators of ‘honour’ crimes.
(b) Enact legislation against honour killings and take necessary legal actions to stop such incidents of gender-based crimes.