Five persons were charged on Saturday by an anti-terrorism court in Pakistan in connection with the stoning to death of a pregnant woman for marrying a person of her choice.
Farzana Parveen, 25, was murdered on May 27 outside the Lahore High Court (LHC) in an apparent honour killing by more than two dozen attackers, including her brother and father, for marrying against her family’s wishes.
A preliminary report submitted by the police in the court nominated the names of five people, including the victim’s father Azeem, two brothers Ghulam Ali and Zahid Iqbal, former husband Mazhar Abbas and a close relative Jahan Khan, as responsible for the murder.
The court indicted all five suspects and adjourned the hearing till July 7. Anti-Terrorism Court Judge Haroon Latif also summoned witnesses for next hearing.
On the day of her death, Farzana of Nankana Sahib district was going to the Lahore High Court along with her husband Muhammad Iqbal, 45, to testify in a case filed by her family against her husband.
She was attacked with bricks by here relatives as she reached near the court. Farzana died on the spot while Iqbal remained unhurt. The incident triggered outrage and widespread condemnation.
Farzana had contracted love marriage with Iqbal (also a resident of Nankana) a few months ago.
Farzana’s family had accused Iqbal of kidnapping her and filed a petition in the LHC saying Farzana was already married to her cousin Mazhar and Iqbal had lured her into second marriage without getting divorce from her first husband.
Iqbal had killed his first wife some six years ago but was freed from jail after his son, the complainant in the case, pardoned him.
After Farzana ran away with Iqbal, her first husband Mazhar registered another case at a police station in Nankana Sahib on the basis of which Iqbal was arrested again.
The report said when Iqbal was released on bail, he filed a writ petition before the Lahore High Court, asking for the FIR against him to be quashed.
Farzana was heading to court to record her statement in this matter when she was attacked and murdered, it said.
Police said the accused had confessed to the brutal murder.