Killed in the name of honor

“All citizens are equal before law and are entitled to equal protection of law. There shall be no discrimination on the basis of sex alone.”

That’s what Pakistan’s constitution says. But the plight of women in Pakistan today is grim.  Last year almost a thousand women were murdered in honor killings, according to the Pakistan Human Rights Commission. The real number is feared to be much higher — many such killings are covered up by families.

Of the 943 cases documented by the commission’s staff, 93 were girls. 

Here’s why these women and girls were killed by husbands, brothers, fathers. They were accused of illicit relations or they voiced a desire to marry a man of their own choice.

Before being killed, at least 19 women were raped, 12 of them gang-raped.

They were shot, bludgeoned and even strangled to death. 

Only 20 of these women and girls were provided any medical aid before they died.

This is now. In Pakistan.

I don’t know the statistics for my native India or neighboring Afghanistan. But all three of these South Asian nations top the list for the worst countries in which to be a woman.

I was horrified to read the Pakistan report today. It probably won’t get much attention in the Western media. So I write this and ask you to think about how these women and girls lost their lives all in the name of saving a family’s honor.

Could there be anything more dishonorable?

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