Karo kari: A deep-rooted norm, a hard battle to win

Published: August 30, 2013
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95% of reported Karo kari cases in Sindh were merely a false claim on woman, says research. PHOTO: FILE

95% of reported Karo kari cases in Sindh were merely a false claim on woman, says research. PHOTO: FILE

SINDH: Around 95% of reported karo kari cases in Sindh are false claims on women,  according to research.

Honour Killing, locally known as ‘karo kari’ is an act of murder due to the belief that the victim has brought dishonour upon the family. In Sindh, the gender based violence, is on a rise. Often women are killed in the name of a ‘karo kari’ which is believed to restore honour and reputation of a family.

“A United Nations (UN) report on woman violence stated that one-third of woman population in the world suffers aggression from men,” quoted former chairperson of National Commission on the Status of Women, Anees Haroon.

Akhlaq Ansari, a short story writer and novelist, believes that Sindh is a region with deep-rooted customs and cultural background, one of which is karo kari. The violence on women is a common tradition which cannot be easily slashed.
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The Regional Director (SPO) Sindh Ghulam Mustafa Baloach supported the opinion stating that women are always taught to be inferior gender in this region. Consequently, they have accepted man’s narrow mindset and aggression as their fate.

“Women in Sindh are considered as an inferior gender and are believed to be incapable of making decisions,” said President Survivor Support Unit (SSU) Maqbool Mashori.

“In this mindset, only a strong constitution on woman protection can reduce the number of sexual exploitation cases,” says Ansari.

However, Advocate Muhammad Saleem Jaiser argues that courts in Pakistan have adopted women protection laws but they are commonly been violated. He further said that it is the responsibility of citizens to abide by the law.

While karo kari is a deep-rooted custom, Mashori proposed some solutions stating that Muslim clerics should stress in their teachings that islam is not a religion of violence and does not allow to kill. He further stated that ‘jirga system’ should be banned and civil society should create awareness about women rights.

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Reader Comments (4)

  • ashar
    Aug 30, 2013 - 7:35PM

    Karo Kari is inversely proportional to Land Reforms.

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  • sars
    Aug 30, 2013 - 7:59PM

    I would suggest we dont use the word “norm”. It suggests that normal people condone it, which is not a message you want to put out.

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  • Kamran Khan
    Aug 30, 2013 - 10:49PM

    Norm doesn’t have a judgement/moral connotation. It doesn’t mean “normal people do it”. It just means, in any given sample of people, the majority do it.

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  • sars
    Aug 30, 2013 - 11:31PM

    @Kamran Khan:
    exactly is that the message we want to give, the majority do it????

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