Reproductive rights?: Woman ‘killed for aborting without consultation’

Published: January 27, 2012
Doctor tells police carrying pregnancy to term could have been fatal.

Doctor tells police carrying pregnancy to term could have been fatal.


A woman was allegedly hanged to death by her husband and in-laws in a Dera Ghazi Khan village after she had terminated her pregnancy without consulting them.

Saddar police have registered an FIR on a complaint filed by Ghulam Abbas, brother of the deceased Saima Bibi, against her husband Ghulam Hasan, a resident of Abar Pind, brother-in-law Shaheen and father-in-law Ahmed Bakhsh.

Abbas told The Express Tribune that there were bruises on his sister’s neck when he saw the body before it was sent for an autopsy on Thursday morning.

He said he was informed about the murder by a distant relative of Saima’s in-laws. He and other relatives of the deceased staged a sit-in in front of the mortuary where Saima’s post mortem examination was underway. They chanted slogans against Saima’s in-laws and demanded their immediate arrest.

Investigation officer Farid Bakhsh told The Tribune that while the investigation of the matter was underway, the police were waiting for the autopsy report to figure out whether or not the woman had been killed. “There were bruises around the neck but that does not necessarily mean that she was murdered. She may have committed suicide,” he said. He said the nominated suspects had fled.

The investigation officer refused to identify the doctor who had carried out the abortion. However, he said, the procedure had been carried out at a private clinic in the Gadai North region. He quoted the doctor as saying, that the woman had been pregnant for three months. “The doctor said Saima had had some medical complication which required the abortion. He said carrying on with the pregnancy could have been fatal for her,” the IO said.

Saima had been married to Ghulam Hasanm about two years ago.

Published in The Express Tribune, January 27th, 2012.

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Reader Comments (18)

  • Noor
    Jan 27, 2012 - 12:02PM

    What Non-sense!

    Abortion is NOT ALLOWED IN ANY Religion of the world; consultation or no consultation.


  • Jeedo
    Jan 27, 2012 - 1:23PM

    @Noor: It doesnt matter if religion allows it or not. You can’t force people to believe in religion. Keep your beliefs to yourself. Moreover, here the woman’s life was at risk so she went for an abortion.


  • M Ali Khan
    Jan 27, 2012 - 1:25PM


    “how come when its us, its an abortion. and when its a chicken, its an omelette?”

    clearly you dont know the legalities of abortion. so aborting a foetus because of rape or something that puts the life of the mother in danger is all illegal??

    “The doctor said Saima had had some medical complication which required the abortion. He said carrying on with the pregnancy could have been fatal for her,”

    when the life of the mother is at risk, even Islam allows abortion!

    Pakistani law specifically says a woman has the right abort without consulting her ‘wali’.


  • Jan 27, 2012 - 1:41PM

    It is allowed in islam in cases where the birth can be fatal to the mother… and FYI mass generalizations about any religion should be avoided….

    hope this answers your outrage :P


  • LiberalFascistBrigade
    Jan 27, 2012 - 1:49PM


    Even in cases of rape, incest or if is a threat to the life of the mother?


  • sarmad abu-bakar
    Jan 27, 2012 - 1:56PM

    @Noor !

    Under Shariah if a mothers life is under threat by her unborn baby it is all legal to go for an abortion! Please go through the para once again, the doctor says it could have been fatal! God pakistan where are we heading?


  • geeko
    Jan 27, 2012 - 2:33PM

    “The doctor said Saima had had some medical complication which required the abortion. He said carrying on with the pregnancy could have been fatal for her,” the IO said.


  • Sadia
    Jan 27, 2012 - 2:38PM

    and murder is?


  • sana
    Jan 27, 2012 - 2:59PM

    Islam allows abortion if there is danger to the life of the mother. Islam hasnt just given the mother the honour of being called a martyr if she dies while giving birth or within the first 40 days of giving birth just like that. if what the doctor says is true she had all islamic rights to get the baby aborted.


  • Sadaf Mujeeb
    Jan 27, 2012 - 3:22PM

    This is horrible. I really hope the culprits are caught and given life imprisonment for this heinous crime. The kind of opinion you have, Noor, is something that I actually expected on an article like this, yet i was pleasantly surprised to see so many other comments right after yours that were pro-choice and empathetic to the victims plight. I think we’re changing as a society for the better day by day. It’s slow, but I can see that it’s happening. Aborting a child is a woman’s choice. She is not answerable to her parents, siblings, husband, in-laws or children for what she does to her body, ESPECIALLY when it’s to save her life.


  • A. Khan
    Jan 27, 2012 - 4:31PM

    When will we become civilized ? And the doctors words were very prophetic for this poor woman i.e. the pregnancy will be fatal for her


  • zain
    Jan 27, 2012 - 7:45PM

    woman has not got the right at all to do so without any one’s permission although killing her is not justifiable .


  • Meera Ghani
    Jan 27, 2012 - 8:12PM

    Heartening to see all the informed comments. I really hope if it was murder that the perpetrators are brought to justice. Islamicly and otherwise a woman should have a right to choose, its her body and her decision. Plus especially if the pregnancy is deemed fatal then she has every right to ask for an abortion and the safer it is to get one the better. So many women die because of unsafe abortions not just in Pakistan but world wide and that’s unacceptable.

    Couldn’t have said it better than Sadaf Mujeeb


  • Mehnaz
    Jan 28, 2012 - 3:13AM

    Noor has a little growing up to do…..broaden her horizon….educate herself with an open mind…and really question the legitimacy of ideas that are thrown around as “religious” – basically anything other than the 5 pillars of Islam :)


  • Noor
    Jan 28, 2012 - 6:28AM

    @sarmad abu-bakar:
    @M Ali Khan:

    Then the title should not have been Abortion but MISCARRIAGE!


  • Noor
    Jan 28, 2012 - 6:44AM

    My apologies for not having read the complete article before commenting;

    @Jeedo: The way of life described by the Creator is in religion. I understand we can’t force it on anybody, but was just mentioning a relevant fact. Please don’t be offended.


  • BS.Detecter
    Jan 28, 2012 - 2:47PM

    Abortion is only allowed when it is putting mother’s life in danger.


  • Shabeen
    Jan 28, 2012 - 8:25PM

    The issue of abortion cannot and should not be generalised . it needs to be viewed in individual perspective, may that be danger to life, legal perspective or religious matter. doctors and abortion providers must understand the implication that the law and the fuss creating relatives can bring on them.


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