Brothers who murdered their sister, ‘Pakistan’s Kim Kardashian’, in an ‘honour killing’ over her sexual social media posts have lost a bid to walk free.
A Multan court on Thursday rejected a request from the slain woman’s parents to pardon her brothers, on the grounds that they had forgiven their sons.
Waseem Baloch strangled his sister Qandeel, 26, to death at their home in 2016, claiming her risque photos and videos had ‘brought dishonour to the Baloch name.’
Her other brother Aslam Shaheen is also before the court at Multan, in the Punjab, although his role is not clear.
Qandeel Baloch, 26, had become a social media celebrity and had 123,000 Instagram followers
Qandeel Baloch’s brother Muhammad Waseem (pictured after he was charged with her murder in 2017)
Pakistani social media celebrity Qandeel Baloch (left and right), whose raunchy selfies sparked outrage in the Muslim country was strangled by her brother in an ‘honour killing’
The affidavit submitted on Wednesday argued that anti-honour killing legislation was brought in months after Qandeel was murdered and therefore should not be applied in her case, Dawn reported.
Parents Muhammad Azeem and Anwar Bibi had also denied the allegation that Baloch was killed for the sake of honour, according to the publication.
But court today dismissed the application to pardon their sons, with Judge Shafi saying the decision on whether the murder could be classed as an honour killing will take place after all testimonies of the witnesses had been recorded.
Qandeel was strangled in July 2016, weeks after she had posed for pictures in a hotel room with high-profile Muslim cleric Mufti Abdul Qavi.
He was sacked from his position on a government committee and rebuked by a religious affairs council after Qandeel released images of her wearing his hat and pouting.
She later called Qavi a ‘blot on the name of Islam’ and accused him of inappropriate behaviour.
She said at the time: ‘I thought I would expose him as he is in reality. He is a different person alone and different when he has his followers around him.’
Some of Qandeel’s more notorious acts included offering to perform a striptease for the Pakistani cricket team, and donning a plunging scarlet dress on Valentine’s Day.
However, her raunchy videos were tame by Western standards and most pop stars can be found in far more provocative poses.
Weeks before her death Qandeel hit headlines when she posted selfies with the Muslim cleric Mufti Abdul Qavi
Qandeel had earned comparisons to US celebrity Kim Kardashian over her social media pictures
Baloch shot to fame in Pakistan in 2014 after a video of her pouting at the camera and asking ‘How em looking?’ went viral
Initially dismissed as a Kardashian-like figure, she was seen by some, including many young people, as empowered in a country where women have fought for their rights for decades.
Her murder reignited calls for action against an epidemic of so-called ‘honour killings’, in which a victim is killed by a close relative – who can subsequently be pardoned by another family member under Pakistan law.
In October 2016, the parliament in Islamabad passed The Anti-Honour Killing Laws which removed the defence of pardoning by a family member.
It mandates life imprisonment, although leaves to the judge’s discretion whether to deem it ‘a crime of honour.’
The Baloch parents have previously attempted to have the case thrown out, but last time they appealed, the judge cited the anti-honour killing law.
Her mother (pictured) looked inconsolable as she cried at Qandeel’s funeral on July 17, 2016
Scores of mourners attended the funeral service in 2016 (pictured: relatives carrying her coffin through the streets)
This despite the father, Mohammad Azeem vowing to never forgive the murderers in the days after Qandeel’s death.
‘There is no pardon from our side,’ the father had said, ‘They should get life imprisonment or death – I will feel happy.’
Qandeel’s brother Waseem told a press conference in the days after the killing that he had no remorse over what he did, saying that ‘of course’ he had murdered his sister and adding that her behaviour had been ‘intolerable.’