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India: Two Honour Killings, What if They Were Muslim?

The Caste system provided the impetus for these murders. Imagine if it had been Muslims, it would be top news across the Islamophobesphere.

(hat tip: Ahmed)

2 teen girls killed for honour in UP

(Times of India)

KANPUR/KAUSHAMBI: Two girls were killed by their relatives for the sake of “honour” within 24 hours in the state. While a 19-year-old girl was axed to death in Kanpur on Tuesday by her grandfather over relationship with a boy from another caste, a youth in Kaushambi shot dead his sister on Monday for having eloped with her lover. With this, the state has reported three honour killings in the one week.

The first incident took place at Sarojini Naidu Nagar where Babulal killed his granddaughter Malti with an axe for having a relationship with a boy of another caste and surrendered before the police, ASPAtul Sonkar said.

In the second case, 18-year-old Meena Devi was shot dead by her brother Sanju in Manauri village of Kaushambi on Monday. Police said Meena had gone to Allahabad three days ago with a youth and had returned on Monday after which her brothers Satish and Sanju questioned her.

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  • Link182

    Thanks for the article and responses. Much appreciated.

  • Mosizzle

    Link182, the fact that laws are impossible to enforce is demonstrated by the statement of Ibn Taymiyah that in the 600+ years between the time of Prophet and his time, there had not even been a single case where adultery was proven by 4 witnesses. These were the best of the best Muslims in that time. That’s how the Sahaba interpreted the laws, and no one was proven to have committed these crimes by 4 witnesses.

    Since proof of the crime by 4 witnesses is impossible, the only way possible is a confession. This way is also closed because the Hadith recommend good Muslims to keep their mouth shut when they commit these mistakes, and instead ask Allah for forgiveness and keep the matter only between themselves and Allah. So essentially, no one can really be killed. The punishments are symbolic to teach people about the severity of the crime.

    If you look at the case of the Iranian woman recently sentenced to stoning, it is known that 4 witnesses were not found. Hence, Iran is operating outside of Islamic law.

  • AJ

    “Are there any progressive theological arguments that allow for the prohibition of premarital sex/adultry without allowing that people should be killed for it?”

    Quran says (Yusuf Ali translation):

    24:2 The woman and the man guilty of adultery or fornication,- flog each of them with a hundred stripes: Let not compassion move you in their case, in a matter prescribed by God, if ye believe in God and the Last Day: and let a party of the Believers witness their punishment

    24:4
    And those who launch a charge against chaste women, and produce not four witnesses (to support their allegations),- flog them with eighty stripes; and reject their evidence ever after: for such men are wicked transgressors;-

    So basically the BIGGEST punishment that could be given to a person, who has commited illicit sexual intercourse, AFTER 4 witnesses have given testimony, would be 100 stripes and NOT death.

    So where would the honor killing come from? Some of these women even have not commited illicit sexual intercourse and have only talked to a guy when they are killed so OF COURSE Islam is NOT involved.

    Stoning to death for married people is from the Bible and has creeped in to some Hadiths (which I don’t believe in). Quran does not even mention the marital status of the person who is flogged. It is the sexual relationship outside between a man and woman outside marriage that matters.

    And then EVERYWHERE in Quran it refers to Allah as oft-Forgiving, oft-Merciful, so I am sure even people who have committed illicit sexual intercourse if truly seek repentence are forgiven and its nobody’s business to go kill them.

    I am sure some people will disagree over the Hadith issue.

  • Mosizzle

    “Are there any progressive theological arguments that allow for the prohibition of premarital sex/adultry without allowing that people should be killed for it?”

    Yes, the fact that 4 very pious witnesses of must have witnessed the sexual act happen in front of them like “a needle enters a kohl bottle”. This makes the death penalty impossible to enforce, as no pious people would ever be present where such acts are taking place and neither will they be able to witness the actual act of penetration (two people just lying on top of each other is not sufficient proof).

    At the end of the day the punishment is impossible to enforce and is just symbolic, to teach people that the crime is so severe that is the only punishment for it.

    Here is where you can find more detail:

    http://www.loonwatch.com/2010/01/anti-sex-laws/

  • Link182

    ‘or for spreading corruption on earth’. I suppose they interpret corruption to include adultry and pre-marital sex which I always thought were capital offences in Islam-according to the hadiths quoted here:

    http://www.islamonline.net/servlet/Satellite?pagename=IslamOnline-English-Ask_Scholar/FatwaE/FatwaE&cid=1119503543392

    Apparently the author thinks that a ‘legal death’ is better than vigilante justice for the appalling ‘crime’ of pre-marital sex. Thus the objection seems to be that Muslims who kill their daughters for having boyfriends are unIslamic in that they did not follow the proper procedure for doing so. Yes the are other religions that hold the same view and yes the Islamic view is superior to some positions advocated in the Bible but none this make it any better in a modern age. Are there any progressive theological arguments that allow for the prohibition of premarital sex/adultry without allowing that people should be killed for it?

    To be honest I myself don’t have that much knowledge of the Islamic theology beyond the Koran (which makes it difficult when countering the claims of Islamaphobes). I ask these question to questions to gain a more naunced view of Islam so I’m sorry if I came off as trying be offensive.

  • Awesome

    “Honor Killing” is, and has always been, a backwards cultural practice, that has nothing to do with religion.

    The only role that religion *might* play, is in what is considered to be “honor” and “dishonor”. However, to actually murder a family member over it, is entirely cultural. That is why you find Christians, Yazidis, and (in this case) even Hindus, who commit it in those regions.

    Just because a Muslim does something, doesn’t mean that it’s necessarily because of Islam. Intelligent people understand this.

  • NassirH

    Here’s a response by Omer Subhani to Spencer’s arguments about honor killing in the Muslim world. The best Spencer can do is claim that the story of Khidr [and Moses] and an unsubstantiated claim made by the author of The Reliance of the Traveller both provide Muslims a carte blanche to kill their children.

    http://omersubhani.blogspot.com/2009/08/honor-killings-and-islam-is-there-link.html

    Spencer hasn’t responded to the above article, although he has responded to the Subhani’s arguments about other subjects (like Dhimmitude).

  • AJ

    Link182,

    What exactly are the Islamic arguments in favor of honour killings?

  • Mosizzle

    I suppose the biggest point against honour killings is that the family do not have the authority to carry out any punishment. They are not judges. Simple.

    And also, there is no penalty on Earth on things like not wearing the scarf, or getting a divorce, or marrying a husband of your own choice etc. These are the things that some women get attacked for and clearly there is no punishment in the Sharia for these things.

    Honour killings have also been condemned by numerous fatwas in Pakistan and elsewhere.

  • Link182, I can provide one verse from the Qu’ran that covers it all and there are literally hundreds of other arguments against:

    “Because of this did We ordain unto the children of Israel that, if anyone slays a human – unless it be (in punishment) for murder or for spreading corruption on earth – it shall be as though he did slay all of mankind; whereas, if anyone saves a life, it shall be as though he saved the lives of all mankind.” (5:32)

    That is pretty clear cut don’t you think?

  • Link182

    Just out of curiosity…What exactly are the Islamic arguments against honour killings?

  • Atif

    Honour killing is very very common in the Indian staes of Haryana /Rajasthan/UP[ adjoining New Delhi]. In most cases the parents/famlies of both the boy and the girl lure them back pretending reconciliation and the quietly poison them or kill them in front of the whole village as a lesson to all who marry outside the clan. Since they are Hindus…. they quickly cremate the bodies so there is no evidence left and the witness do not open thier mouth so the police close the case after some time. As no body files any missing person case. If any NGO do files any case they do not get any cooperation from the witness and are threatened also.

    Nowadays the Indian TV Channels call these killing Dishonour killings.
    Its not going to end soon…..

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