Death Is The Consequence Of Denying A Suitor

Pakistani police have arrested the main suspect in the event of a teacher burnt to death for rejecting a suitor.


19-year-old, Maria Sadaqat, was attacked in Murree, in her home by a group of men on Sunday and later died in hospital.

The owner of the school where she worked as a teacher, Shaukat Mahmood has been arrested, alongside five other suspects who are in police custody. Maria Sadaqat allegedly turned down Mr Mahmood’s son’s hand in marriage.

Similar attacks on women who decline marriage proposals are very common in Pakistan.

Mr Mahmood was held in Rawalpindi, amongst three other men who were also arrested. Two others were taken into custody previous to these arrests.

According to Maria Sadaqat’s family, Mr Mahmood’s son is already married with a child which is why they rejected the marriage proposal.

The police recorded a statement from Miss Sadaqat in a hospital in Islamabad before she died.

Maria Sadaqat.
Maria Sadaqat.

She reported that she was beaten and covered in fuel before being set ablaze near the hill resort of Murree, near to the capital.

She was reported to have 85% burns by local media reports.

Violent behaviour against women is common in Pakistan, which is frequently associated with an alleged loss of honour, which is the case in Maria Sadaqat’s death.

Many of these violent incidents are not reported as they take place within the family.

In many instances, family members do not report due to the need to keep the family name out of the news, for fear of publicity. Many families prefer out-of-court settlements, which only gives more courage to young men who commit these acts.

The attack on Miss Sadaqat occurred in the Punjab Province and was reported, regardless of the publicity of the family name.

The Punjab Province recently passed a landmark law that criminalises all forms of violence against women.

However, over 30 religious groups threatened to launch protests if the law was not revoked.

The Council of Islamic Ideology, which counsels the government, proposed making it legal for husbands to “lightly beat” their wives, which also had a negative response.

Religious groups have associated women’s rights campaigns with elevation of indecency.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here