OTTAWA: A Pakistani father and brother of a 16-year-old girl pleaded guilty in a Toronto courthouse to her 2007 murder for disobeying them, a court official said Wednesday.
Toronto taxi-driver Muhammad Parvez, 60, and tow-truck driver Waqas Parvez, 29, pleaded guilty to the murder of Aqsa Parvez in late 2007, and are to be sentenced to life in prison.
They must serve at least 18 years in prison before being eligible for parole, an Ontario Superior Court official told AFP.
According to a statement of agreed facts, Aqsa’s brother picked her up from a school bus stop in a Toronto suburb and took her home on December 10, 2007. There, her father strangled her to death.
“I killed my daughter,” he told a 911 operator, said court documents. Paramedics found her lying dead in her bed, blood running from her nose.
Muhammad’s wife, Anwar Jan, told the police that he had killed their youngest of eight children over her delinquent behavior.
“My community will say you have not been able to control your daughter. This is my insult,” Muhammad had told her, Anwar Jan told the police. “She is punished.”
The whole family was born in Pakistan and immigrated to Canada in two waves, in 1999 and in 2001.
Women in the family while living in Canada were still expected to dress “traditionally” and were financially dependent on the men in the family.
One year before her death, Aqsa complained of “conflict at home over cultural differences between living in Canada and back home,” said court files.
Her father had already chosen someone in Pakistan for her to marry, she told a school counselor. She also told her vice principal “that she no longer wanted to dress traditionally like the other women in her family and she did not wish to wear a hijab,” but feared her father.
After running away many times over several years, and a few family counseling sessions, her father relented and her mother took her shopping for Western clothes in September 2007.
But she continued to complain about not being given enough freedom at home, having to come home directly after school and not being permitted to get a part time job.
Aqsa was killed after multiple attempts by family members to persuade her to move back home.
More in PakistanSHC issues stay order against KESC tariff hike