Decade after being scarred by acid, Fakhra Yunus jumps to her death

Allegedly attacked in 2000 by Ghulam Mustafa Khar's son Bilal Khar, her body is due to arrive in Karach­i on...

Yousuf Saifuddin/web Desk March 24, 2012

ROME: The long standing and once highly publicised case of acid victim Fakhra Younus met its tragic end on March 17 when she jumped to her death in the Italian city of Rome. Her body is due to reach Karachi on Sunday, Express News reported.

Yunus, wife former Member of Provincial Assembly Bilal Khar, had been undergoing treatment for acid scarred tissue, including multiple corrective surgeries in Rome.

At the time, it had been reported that Khar, son of former Punjab governor and Pakistan Peoples Party leader Ghulam Mustafa Khar, had attacked Yunus with acid in 2000 after she had left him. The two had shared a troubled marriage dotted with domestic violence.

On March 17, she leapt off from the sixth floor of a building. Her body was expected to arrive in Karachi via air on March 25.

Bilal Khar should be severely punished: Altaf Hussain

Meanwhile Muttahida Qaumi Movement(MQM) chief Altaf Hussain has demanded for Yunus’ assailant, Khar, to be brought to book and be severely punished according to the law.

In a statement, issued shortly after news of her death was aired, Hussain said that Khar was responsible for her death since his act had emotionally scarred her, leading to her eventual suicide.

Hussain added that MQM would support Yunus' family in getting justice.

The case

In 1998, Yunus was an 18 year old resident of Napier Road’s Bulbul Bazar, Karachi's red light district, when she met the then Muzaffargarh MPA Bilal Khar.

They both got married after a six month relationship. This was Bilal’s third marriage, while Yunus had a three year old son from an earlier liaison.

Little did Yunus know, that this was not meant to be her fairytale marriage, since shortly after the marriage, she faced both physical and mental abuse by Khar, which lasted for three years before she eventually escaped and moved in with her mother.

An infuriated Khar allegedly took ‘revenge’ by pouring acid over her on May 14, 2000, as her five year old son watched. The attack left her severely burned, particularly her face. She, however, survived the attack but not before spending three months in intensive care.

Khar used his political influence to evade arrest and absconded, while Yunus’s family faced difficulty in registering an FIR against him.

On October 31, 2002, Khar was eventually arrested, but released in 2003 on Rs 200,000 bail.

In Yunus’ time of despair, social activist Tehmina Durrani came to the forefront to assist her. Durrani, ironically, was once married to Ghulam Mustafa Khar.

After the then government showed reluctance in helping Yunus, Durrani convinced the Italian government to help her, by not only providing asylum but also sponsoring her treatment there. Khar, leveraging his influence, had vehemently tried to stop her exit from Pakistan, but failed.

After over a decade of undergoing treatment in Italy, an emotionally scarred Fakhra, lost hope and committed suicide by jumping out of her sixth floor residence.

Khar currently resides in his ancestral home in Kot Addu.


Vikram | 8 years ago | Reply

@milo: Is there any proof that Khar did this? Wasn”t he acquitted by court?

Rich people can make "proofs disppear". You can buy police with money?

To begin with this guy should be given a lie detector test by a foreign non-Pakistani lab. Proper investigation still can uncover some kind of evidence.

Fakhra did not throw acid on herself. Main suspect in this case is her HUSBAND because she left him after he treated her real bad.

Abid P. Khan | 8 years ago | Reply @milo: "Is there any proof that Khar did this? Wasn”t he acquitted by court?" Once Aitezaz Ahsan said, that despite Zardari was incarcerated for 11 years, one could not tie him (Zardari) to any case. Jimmy Hoffa could not be tied to any case, finally he was busted for faulty income tax declaration.
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