LAHORE: An anti-terrorism court (ATC) Lahore awarded death penalty to Parveen Rafique on Monday for burning to death her daughter who contracted a free-will marriage.
Zeenat Bibi was set on fire on June 8, 2016 a little over a week after she tied the knot with Hassan Khan, a 20-year-old motorcycle mechanic, against the wishes of her family. Her mother Parveen Bibi confessed to the killing.
The judge also awarded life imprisonment to co-accused Anees, Rafique’s son who in connivance with the main accused killing 17-year-old Zeenat.
The main convict had earlier stated in the court that she had no remorse over murdering her daughter as she confessed to setting the girl ablaze. She, however, claimed that her son and Zeenat’s brother-in-law were not involved in the incident.
Naming Parveen and her son guilty, police in their challan said that a proper trial was initiated against the accused. On the other hand, the counsel for the accused contended that they were implicated in a forged case for blackmailing purposes.
However, the prosecution maintained that there were several substantial evidences that the accused was involved in the heinous crime of setting the girl ablaze.
After hearing the arguments of both the sides, the judge awarded death sentence to the girl’s mother and life imprisonment to her son.
Zeenat had married Hassan but days later, the girl’s mother brought her back home vowing to marry her off as per traditions and customs. Instead, the woman burned her daughter alive.
Hassan said that he reluctantly allowed his wife to return after her family promised they would hold a celebration and not harm his wife.
Hundreds of women are murdered by their relatives in Pakistan each year on the pretext of defending what is seen as family honour.