September 21, 2017, 6:39 pm

The curious case of Qandeel Baloch’s murder. 

by Hiba Taha Usmani.

Qandeel Baloch has been popularly tagged as the Kim Kardashian of Pakistan: her scandalous dressing, her outlandish views, and her all around comfort in her women-ness has been a source of controversy, entertainment, and fury around the country. She became so infamous that due to fear for her life, she had decided to leave the country after Eid with her parents. And so it was that last night in her family home in Multan, Qandeel Baloch was murdered by her younger brother.

​The 26-year old internet sensation had become an intense trend on social media; every major Facebook page was following her every move to the point where she was even making headlines on popular news channels.

Some of her most scandalous works include offering strip tease to Pakistani team on the condition that they will win the match against India, some wild pictures of her and a popular religious figure, and recently her twerking in a music video, ‘Ban’.

While she managed to garner some genuine fans, most of the country was against her character, because she was apparently going against religious and cultural norms of the country in which she resided. Some of these haters managed to reach her brother and poisoned his mind against his own flesh and blood. Finally, in a murderous rage, he ended his sister’s life.

​She was killed by her brother late on Friday night. Early reports stated that she was shot but the police has now arrested the nurderer from D.G.Khan and he has admitted to killing her by suffocating with the use of a pillow. It was also reported in Pakistan Today, that Qandeel’s brother had ran off with her money, jewelry, and phone, which is why it is even harder to say if it was all for honour.

Considering the high level of frustration and rage in the average Pakistani, it was probably bound to happen. Either way, this killing was undoubtedly related to the so-called honour of the family and can be racked up as yet another honour killing.

​Honour killing has become far too common in the country. From brothers killing their sisters for talking to the opposite gender to mothers killing their daughters for marrying their own choice, women all across the country have well enough reason to worry about their own lives. It was once jokingly said that the only way women can stay safe is if they stay locked in their own home, until that became the truth.

Now, not even their own homes are safe. It is unfair to assume that honour killing is a norm in the society and that every single girl in the country is under the real threat of it; many of us belong to sensible families that would never resort to such drastic measures. The issue here is not the killing; it is what drives men to go that far.

​Pakistan has been listed as the second worst country for women to live in. The high amount of rape, honour killings, acid attacks, live burials, and harassment has made it a scary place in the eyes of the world.

The source and the cause behind this one thing: intolerance. Intolerance towards other’s beliefs, be it religious, political, moral, or social, has made voicing one’s opinion the most dangerous actions in this country, and for a woman to do so in a society where they are expected to remain hushed up is even more infuriating. The patriarchal mind-set that exists has created a toxicity in the society and we as a nation are suffocated by it.

​No matter what your views about her and her actions might be, Qandeel’s death is a sad news for the nation. We can’t hope that this one killing will make any change, but we can hope that everyone can mourn this death as unjust and terrible as possible. However, if social media is to be believed, we have failed collectively to show this level of humanity also.

Rest in Peace, Qandeel.

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