Honor Killing- A Social Curse

Honor killing is a social fact that now has become an epidemic and it mostly occurs in South Asia and Middle East countries to secure or protect the honor and dignity of any particular family or community through sacrificing one (sometimes more than one) of the family members. In most cases, victims have been killed by their own parents and relatives or by community people as they fear victims have brought shame and humiliation upon their family reputation or violated the rule of the community or religion.

Honor killing is a common issue in countries like India, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Turkey, Saudi Arab and so on. In order to sustain family reputation and defend the rules of community of any particular religion or caste people of these countries consider it as a ritual. Victims have been targeted by their own family or community – if they have any love affairs before marriage with different caste or religion and want get married with them, having extra marital relationship, sexual relationship before marriage, and if any girl gets acculturated with the Western culture, or refuge to get married to her parent’s suitor, a married woman asks for divorce, or if anyone is victim of rape etc. Since last decade the number of honor killing is increasing in European countries also which is a warning for us that it is expanding from east to west. In social media it is also a burning issue for international news channels. But most of the victims’ families in European countries belong from Asia and Middle East (India, Pakistan, Afghanistan etc.)

Apparently, most of the victims of honor killing are women nevertheless it is not a crime against woman only. It is a crime against society, law and mostly against humanity. It has a long history and has been preserved as a custom in society. Conservative and illiterate people considers breaking rules of the community, caste and religion is a great sin and basically for women. But recent incidents of honor killing shows us that it is not occurring only in uneducated families and rural or remote areas. People from well educated family are also killing their own family member  for the sake of honor. So it doesn’t matter people are educated or not.  It depends on people’s psychology  and those people are psychologically isolated in themselves. Geography position is a fatal cause of the honor killing. Sometimes religious faith is also blamed for the occurrence of honor killing. But it is also baseless. There is no religion in this earth can’t be found that  tells to kill innocent people only for honor.

Murderers feel its their duty to defend the family honor and maintain the rule of the society. They are protected by the people of their community. Most of the cases of honor killing remain in dark as victim’s family report it as suicide, accident or missing case. In few cases victims have survived after brutally attacked by their family members but they have to live with the trauma and agony till their last breath what they have faced.

So Honor Killing is a curse for any society that tears down the core of the family bondage in the name of honor and pride. In order to stop this virus or to wipe it out from the society we should be aware.

Author: Nusrat Zahan

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