‘Chandigarh: A father kills her 17 years old daughter and her 21 years old lover in a fit of rage after seeing them together in a room, talking.’
‘Bhojpur, Bihar: A 16-year-old girl, Imrana, is set on fire inside her house in a case of what the police call ‘moral vigilantism’. The victim screams for help for about 20 minutes before neighbors arrive, only to find her still smoldering. She is admitted to a local hospital, where she later succumbs to her burns.’
‘The Times of India Report: More than 1,000 young people in India have been done to death every year owing to 'Honour Killings' linked to marriages and love affairs that do not get acceptance from the society.’
I read these lines in the newspapers and feel bad. And sad. How can a brother strangulate his sister in Punjab, no matter what the reason is! (And I get reminded that Raksha Bandhan is 3 days from now. Irony.) How can a father shoot at his own daughter, the one whom he had once taught how to walk by holding her little fingers?
How can a human kill his own family member so that he may live ‘with honour’ in his society?
What kind of civilization is this! We talk of progress and development. We talk of 11%+ GDP growth rate. We talk of the great Indian culture and the great Indian villages. What a royal waste!
If such sorts of inhuman barbaric practices are executed in the traditional villages and rural parts of India, one would better walk off to the nearest metropolitan city. And one should.
Human emotions deserve much more than fits of rage and false sense of honour in the society.
And what kind of distorted sense of honour is this!
“ Look, I killed my daughter, because she had the heart to love someone. Ain’t I the real man?”
“ My sister tried to rot the pure lineage of my family. I showed her that we are a bunch of the pure people. Come, smell my blood, don’t you sense unadulterated genes?”
“ How could I not kill them! What right they had to elope and come back, thinking that I would accept them?”
“ Castes are God’s rules. You just can not play with our family’s honour in this manner. What would my neighbor say? That my daughter fled with that guy who had a decent job, but was low caste none the less? I won’t let that happen.”
“You fuck with the society’s rules, the society fucks with your lives.”
What nonsensical justifications! Any sane man/ woman would never accept any lame excuse like these for a heinous act as brutal as a homicide. I wonder what honor it brings to the ‘so-called-honor-seeking-pure-blood people’. They are nothing but a bunch of Neanderthalean troglodytes, who have no sense of respect for human life at all, leave alone the question of valuing human emotions.
Okay. Your daughter eloped with a guy whom you do not appreciate. Now, its your fault that you didn’t raise your daughter in such a manner that she would apprise you of such an important decision that she is going to make. And you have no right whatsoever to shoot at her lover, in any book of legal, social or moral rules and laws!
A couple of adults (above the legal age of marriage) like each other, they marry each other. In an ‘Independent’ country like India, they have every right to lead a happy and satisfying life together. No crap panchayat (read Khap panchayat) has the legal power to order harming the couple, let alone the question of killing them.
I wonder what the government is doing about it. Yeah yeah, the 64th Independence day celebrations are over now. The parliament sessions have begun already. In June 2010, scrutinizing the increasing number of honour killings, the Supreme Court of India issued notices to the Central Government and six states including Uttar Pradesh, Punjab,Haryana and Rajasthan, to take preventive measures, says a news report.
What we need now is a solid constitutional amendment which bans honour killings totally, and arranges for fitting legal consequences to all the people involved, including the total dissolution of the Panchayat, if required.
A zero tolerance approach.
P.S. Google says that no honour killings have taken place in the state of West Bengal since the last 100 years. And being in W.Bengal since the last four years, I want to believe it. Human, I am, after all.