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HomeNationalAbsence of justice lamented as Qandeel Baloch's murderer walks free

Absence of justice lamented as Qandeel Baloch’s murderer walks free

Qandeel Baloch was victim of honour killing in 2016

Several are rattled over the lack of justice after Qandeel Baloch’s killer, her brother Wasim, was acquitted by the court.

A Lahore High court bench acquitted the accused after receiving submission of consent from his mother. In September 2019, the court sentenced Qandeel’s brother to life imprisonment for killing the model and actress in the name of “honour” in 2016.

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Baloch’s murder sent shockwaves through the country and found condemnation internationally as well. Her killer’s acquittal has renewed a certain frenzy over the inability to procure justice in Pakistan.

Renowned lawyer and Digital Rights Foundation Founder Nighat Dad said Wasim who had admitted to killing his sister would now walk free in a country where someone like Qandeel was unable to exercise her freedom of choice.

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In a separate tweet, she noted that the acquittal happened despite the law having been amended with regards to such a case. She said that the “state vowed to become party in the case” but such was the “sorry state of not so sorry state”.

Sociologist Nida Kirmani had a similar point to make, asserting that she thought the 2016 amendment had made it difficult to forgive a perpetrator of honour killing. She questioned how Wasim could have been acquitted.

Member of provincial assembly (MPA) Hina Parvez Butt was also shaken by the news and questioned how the courts would deliver justice if the killers of sisters were allowed to roamed outside openly.

Journalist Hamza Azhar Salam meanwhile pointed out the social irony inherent in the Qandeel Baloch murder case. Salam said that it was a shame that people who watched the content she produced were the same ones justifying her murder.

Meanwhile, human rights activist Usama Khilji implored that the “state must become a party in murder cases, especially gender-based crimes” otherwise killers would surface again brazenly. He questioned whether women could stay safe in a place where Baloch’s murderer walked free.

Social and public policy advisor Fauzia Yazdani said that the acquittal had failed all women who were subjected to honour killings in Pakistan. She said that people should stop equating honor with the being of a women and stop honour killings.

A social media user also wondered whether the state would just go ahead and exonerate all killers and other criminals if the parents of a victim forgave them. He lamented that justice had ceased to exist in Pakistan.

 

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