Reported Cases of Honour Killing- Punjab

December 23, 2020

According to Section. 299 of Pakistan Penal Code, 1860, Honour Killing is defined as "Offence committed in the name or on the pretext of honour means an offence committed in the name or on the pretext of Karo Kari, Siyah Kari or similar other customs or practices". Pakistan has the highest figures for estimated and reported honour killings per capita globally. Out of every 5000 honour killings, 1000 are committed in Pakistan.

The word 'Karo Kari' and 'Siyah Kari' are used for this act in Pakistan to connotate a 'black male' or a 'black female'. The history of honour killing goes back to the subcontinent, where it was practised under the name of 'Sati', in which a widow would burn herself after the death of her husband, voluntarily. This practice is not specific to Pakistan, the roots of honour killing go back to ancient Roman times where the male member of the family holds a right to kill the unmarried female members who were sexually active or committed adultery.

From 2004 to 2016, there were approximately 15222 cases of honour killing, as reported by The Human Rights Commission of Pakistan. In 2014 alone, 837 women and 75 minors were murdered under the name of honour killing, out of which only 400 cases were registered by the police.

According to the Statistical Officer (Investigation Branch), total 2720 honour killing cases have been reported in Punjab over the past nine years. If we consider the trend, the honour killings reduced from 2014 till 2017 by 18.8 %,24.3 % and 27.0 % in respective years. From 2017 to 2018 there was a 34.8 % increase in honour killings, which decreased by 19.2 % in 2019.

If we consider individual districts in Punjab, over the past nine years, Faisalabad has the highest number of honour killing cases, 10.8 % of total cases in Punjab. Total reported cases in Faisalabad were 295, followed by Sargodha with 171 cases and Rahim Yar Khan with 132 cases.  

This blog post is written by Namra Naseem, student from the batch of 2020 at Lahore University of Management Sciences.