An Overview of the Religious Perspective of Honour Killing in Federally Administered Tribal Areas (Fata) of Pakistan

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Bibliographic Information
Journal Al-Idah
Title An Overview of the Religious Perspective of Honour Killing in Federally Administered Tribal Areas (Fata) of Pakistan
Author(s) Bangash, Arshad Khan, Samiullah
Volume 34
Issue 1
Year 2017
Pages 104-118
Full Text Crystal Clear mimetype pdf.png
Keywords Honour Killing, Maliks, Turizuna, Fiqhi Masayel and Hudood Ordinance.
Chicago 16th Bangash, Arshad Khan, Samiullah. "An Overview of the Religious Perspective of Honour Killing in Federally Administered Tribal Areas (Fata) of Pakistan." Al-Idah 34, no. 1 (2017).
APA 6th Bangash, A. K., Samiullah (2017). An Overview of the Religious Perspective of Honour Killing in Federally Administered Tribal Areas (Fata) of Pakistan. Al-Idah, 34(1).
MHRA Bangash, Arshad Khan, Samiullah. 2017. 'An Overview of the Religious Perspective of Honour Killing in Federally Administered Tribal Areas (Fata) of Pakistan', Al-Idah, 34.
MLA Bangash, Arshad Khan, Samiullah. "An Overview of the Religious Perspective of Honour Killing in Federally Administered Tribal Areas (Fata) of Pakistan." Al-Idah 34.1 (2017). Print.
Harvard BANGASH, A. K., SAMIULLAH 2017. An Overview of the Religious Perspective of Honour Killing in Federally Administered Tribal Areas (Fata) of Pakistan. Al-Idah, 34.
قرآن مجید بطور معجزاتی چیلنج: قدیم و جدید آراء کا تقابل
صحیح البخاری کی کتب اور ابواب میں نظم و مناسبت تحقیقی جائزہ
اجتماعی اجتہاد کا تصور اور عصر حاضر کے اہم توجہ طلب شرعی مسائل کے حل کے لئے عالم اسلام کے اہم اداروں کا تعارف
خلع میں شوہر کی رضامندی و عدم رضامندی: یک طرفہ فیصلے کی شرعی حیثیت
مسیحیت، اناجیل اربعہ اور بنیادی مسیحی عقائد کا مختصر تعارف
پاکستانی معاشرے میں تاخیر سے شادیوں کا اسلامی نقطہ نظر سےجائزہ
تصوف کے غیر مشہور سلاسل کا تحقیقی جائزہ
ابن خرداذبہ اور ان كى كتاب المسالك والممالك: تاریخى وتنقیدى جائزہ
كمال التحقيق في ترجمة نبي الله يوسف الصديق
صاحبزاده ميان محمدي بن ميان عمر: حياته، خدماته وآثاره العلمية
أدب الرحلة: أهميته وأسلوبه وخصائصه وتطوره
إستراتيجية التفاؤل في ضوء قصيدة فلسفة الحياة لإيليا أبو ماضي
الفكر السياسي الإسلامي وتطوره من الشورى إلى الديمقراطية
دور الفرد في مكافحة الجريمة الجنائية في الشريعة الإسلامية والقانون الوضعي
أمير الشعراء أحمد شوقي: نثره الفني ومنهجه
Beyond Ritualism: Impact and Implications of Ḥajj on the Society of Pakistan
Istisnā’- a Realistic Approach to the Concept in Islamic Finance and its Application to the Agricultural Sector in Pakistan
The Universality and Scope of Justice in Islam
Theological Foundations for Interfaith Dialogue in Islam
The Indian Muslims’ Services to Afghanistan & Turkey (1901-1929)
Al-Sukākī’s Classification of Metaphor and Qurānic Discourse
An Overview of the Religious Perspective of Honour Killing in Federally Administered Tribal Areas (Fata) of Pakistan
Stylistic and Semantic Incongruities in the Earliest Purported English Translation of the Qur’an by Alexander Ross
The Region of Punjab: A Sufi Perspective With Particular Focus on Chishtiya Sufism

Abstract

This article maps the role of religion in the prevalence and promotion of honour killing in tribal areas of Pakistan. Through simple sampling method a sample size of 377 respondents, comprising of ‘Maliks’ were selected from the study universe. The collected data was interpreted and presented at uni-variate, bi-variate and multi-variate levels. Chi-square test statistics were used to draw association between dependent variable (honour killing) and independent variable (religion) both at bi-variate and multi-variate levels. The study found a significant relationship of honour killing with the importance of religion in people lives, alienation from the religious teachings ,dominance of cultural values over religion ,existence of honour killing in all religious sects (Shia and Sunni), and lack of factual religious knowledge about honour killing. Moreover, a non-significant relationship of honour killing was found with permission of honour killing in Islam, and religious clerics often speak about honour killing in religious sermons. Understanding of women and their rights in light of the teachings of Islam, religious clerics need to perform their true role, and killing in either shape needs to be propagated as against the religion were presented some of the policy recommendations in lights of the study results.


Introduction:

Honour killing is deliberate murder of a woman either for actual or perceived illegitimate sexual relationships and behaviours.[1],[2]mostly targeted by male family members[3],[4] or relatives due to their denial of an arrange marriage, fallen victim to a sexual assault (Human Rights Watch, 2004)[5], extra marital affairs[6]desires for seeking employment, forced marriage looking for divorce or disobedience towards family patriarch is considered as honour killing. The term is often used interchangeably with the terms femicide, honour crimes, crimes of honour or crimes of traditions. However, these terms are often overlapping with each other.[7],[8]

A growing body of sociological literature explains that there is no relation between religion and honour killing, but the ancient roots of the origin of honour killing demonstrate the origin on the grounds of gender based power dynamics.[9] Honour killing is neither limited to a particular locality nor religion.[10] This criminal act is not only followed by Muslims but as well as from the followers of other religions.[11],[12]

Gill (2008) stated that honour killing and honour based violence trespass cultural boundaries and it is not only perpetuated by Muslims but as well by Christen, Druze and occasionally Jews mainly in Greek and Latin American Societies. Some people try to justify honour killing according to the religious injunctions of Islam, but in reality the true spirit of Islam oppose honour based killing[13]. Kutty (2000) and Mojab (2004) stated that honour killing cannot be attached with Islam because there is no such concept of honour based killing in Islam rather it is the counter product of patriarchy[14],[15]. Respectively, Lupajarvi (2003) examined that somehow all religions of the world are influenced from patriarchal interpretations in terms of codifying certain repressive practices to undermine gender relations, and these religions are by and large dominated by some conservative forces for the purpose to retain and sustain patriarchal superiority[16]. Likewise, Badawi (1971) and Douki, S., et.al. (2003) described that the acceptance of violence is not solely attributed to religion but an outcome of patriarchal ideologies.[17],[18]

Hassan (2008) illustrated that the practice of honour killing can be traced back to the Pre-Islamic period and added that the Islamic theological rationale does not sanction honour killing. He further deduced that misconceptions regarding the attachment of honour killing with Islam are mainly due the reason of its greater prevalence in Muslim societies[19]. Radtke (2008) depicted that the concept of honour killing in Islamic societies is deeply rooted in the cultural traditions and has long been a gendered principle. He further added that such crimes are mostly widespread throughout the Islamic communities but neither Islam nor its laws sanction killings in the name of honour[20]. Chesler (2009) also supported this argument and stated that the vast majority of honour killing occurred within Muslim communities[21]. But neither Islam nor its laws justify honour crimes to preserve or restore the family reputation.[22] Warrick (2005) argued that for Muslim men, honour represent moral behaviour and determine his social status within the community[23]. The Holy book of Muslim, the ‘Quran’ also forbid honour killing.[24]According to Mansur et al. (2009), Islam and ‘Quran’ explicitly banned the custom of honour killing. They further elaborated that such killings are attached with the tribal patriarchal cultural values and customs, which demand to protect men honour[25]. Respectively, Lupajarvi, (2003) highlighted that there is no ‘Quranic’ justification for honour based killing rather the fact, that many perpetrators justify themselves according to their faith[26].

The bulk of literature highlighted the prevalence of honour killing among the followers of other religions. According to McKee (1992) honour-bound societies are not unique to Islamic or Southern Mediterranean societies, but such types of behaviour can be found in the Andes[27]. Button (2008) states that honour killing are also practiced by religions with fewer followers such as Sikhism[28]. Hindu culture support patriarchal values and female inferiority[29]and like Hinduism, Buddhism also considers women obedience towards men[30]. Vitoshka, (2010) stated that honour killing was the part of Western legal history before getting an institutionalized structure in Muslim countries[31]. Likewise, Faqir(2001) stated that the socio-political structures of many Muslim societies arestronger than religion to sustain the act of honour killing[32]. Historical evidence reflected that honour killing was common practice during the Pre-Islamic era[33]. Moreover, Moghissi (2005) contended that Islam always supported women and rescued them from different type of oppression as the Holy Prophet Muhammd (PBUH) gave respect to women and also instructed their followers (Muslims) to be patient with women[34].

Methods and Procedure:

The present research study was carried out in Kurram Agency, Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) of Pakistan with the sole objective to investigate the role of religion in honour killing. A sample size of 377 respondents was randomly selected, comprising of ‘Maliks’through proportional allocation method by using the criteria for sample size determination given by Sekaran (2003)[35]. A comprehensive tool of data collection (interview schedule) was designed by incorporating dependent variable (honour killing) and independent variables (religion).To construct an attitudinal questions in the interview schedule, the concept were measured through various statements on a continuum ranging from strongly agree to strongly disagree.In this regard to measure changes in an individual responses and obtaining the desired degree of responses, dependent variable of the study was indexed. To obtain the layout of the data both thematic and independent variables were also assessed through frequency and their respective percentage distribution. Chi-square test statistics were used to establish the relationship between dependent and independent variables and the same was determined with the help of using bi-variate analysis procedures, to reveal the direction of the responses. To establish spurious or non-spurious association between the two variables, multivariate analyses were carried out. The most important variable in the study namely marital status were kept controlled and dependent and independent variables were cross tabulated to find out the relationship that either it is spurious or non-spurious.

Uni-Variate Data Analysis

Attributes Strongly Agree Agree Undecided Disagree Strongly Disagree
Importance of religion in people lives 231 (61.3) 53 (14.1) 42 (11.1) 30 (8.0) 21 (5.6)
Permission in Islam 15 (4.0) 27 (7.2) 71 (18.8) 56 (14.9) 208 (55.2)
Alienation from the religious teachings 238 (63.1) 19 (5.0) 50 (13.3) 21 (5.6) 49 (13.0)
Dominance of cultural values over religion 270 (71.6) 75 (19.9) 29 (7.7) 3 (0.8) 00 (0.0)
Existence of honour killing in all religious sects 254 (67.4) 27 (7.2) 40 (10.6) 22 (5.8) 34 (9.0)
Religious clerics speak about honour killing in religious sermons 4 (1.1) 34 (9.0) 42 (11.1) 20 (5.3) 277 (73.5)
Lack of factual religious knowledge 231 (61.3) 19 (5.0) 52 (13.8) 63 (16.7) 12 (3.2)

Islam does not permit honour killing but such killing equally exists in all sects of the study universe which is the byproduct of alienation from the religious teachings and domination of cultural values over religion.The above table indicated explanation about religious perspective on honour killing.

The results suggested that majority of the respondents 231 (61.3%) strongly agreed with the importance of religion in the lives of the local people. These findings explained the vital role of religion and its profound effects on human behaviours. Pakistan society is religion based, which extends teachings, sermons and dictation of life to various aspects of life including politics, economy and social structure[36] (Kulwicki, 2002).

In contrast, majority of the respondents 208 (55.2%) strongly opposed that honour killing is permitted in Islam. Contrary to these research findings, Eisner and Ghuneim (2013) explored that religion was identified as a leading institution, shaping the human minds for honour killing[37]. Although, it had been declared as a non-religious and un-Islamic practice, still it is practiced in shadows of religion[38].

Moreover, majority of the respondents 238 (63.1%) strongly considered alienation from the religious teachings as a causative factor of honour killing. However, as per inferences, it was found in lines to the prevalent cultural traits. It has been noticed that Pakhtun obey culture with more dedication than religion[39].

Similarly, majority of the respondents 270 (71.6%) strongly acknowledged the dominance of cultural values over religion. These findings had endorsements to the preceding inferences, emphasizedon thecomplete control of male on women. Moreover, honour killing was found a collective norm of the Pakhtun society, rather individual’s preferences[40],[41].

Furthermore, a huge majority of the respondents 254 (67.4%) strongly endorsed the existence of honour killing in all religious sects of the study universe i.e. Shia and Sunni. Although honour killing has been attributed to the cultural perspectives, however, strict adherence to the preservation and exercising has been misunderstood as religion. Hekmat(1998) supported for patriarchy in all school of thoughts have led ways to the assumption with regards to honour killing as religious. This has empowered a man to enjoy property rights over a woman body and soul[42].

Contrary to the above, majority of the respondents277 (73.5%) strongly opposed that religious clerics speak about honour killing in religious sermons. Though, the study findings did not support a dynamic role of religious leaders in containment of honour killing. However, their complete silence over this issue, has given strength to this phenomena of honour killing. These findings were in lines toPatel (1993) and Kulczycki and Windle (2011) who suggested that classes have not played their role against the widespread existence of religious support for honour killing[43],[44]. Moreover, opposition to women movements from religious leaders has also eroded women plight in Pakhtun society.

In addition, a majority of the respondents 231 (61.3%) strongly endorsed the lack of factual religious knowledge among tribal population. These findings were in line to the conclusion of Hussain, et.al. (2016) who discovered that Pakistani socio-cultural system is mostly interpreted by religious leaders. They have a vague role in interpreting the Islamic code of life, which has made women inferior to men[45].

Bi-Varite Anslysis:

Religious Aspects Response Honour Killing Total Statistics
Agree Disagree
Importance of religion in people lives Strongly Agree 113 (30.0%) 118 (31.3%) 231 (61.3%) χ2= 11.372

P=0.023

Agree 18 (4.8%) 35 (9.3%) 53 (14.1%)
Undecided 14 (3.7%) 28 (7.4%) 42 (11.1%)
Disagree 18 (4.8%) 12 (3.2%) 30 (8.0%)
Strongly Disagree 6 (1.6%) 15 (4.0%) 21 (5.6%)
Permission in Islam Strongly Agree 8 (2.1%) 7 (1.9%) 15 (4.0%) χ2= 7.271

P=0.122

Agree 15 (4.0%) 12 (3.2%) 27 (7.2%)
Undecided 30 (8.0%) 41 (10.9%) 71 (18.8%)
Disagree 17 (4.5%) 39 (10.3%) 56 (14.9%)
Strongly Disagree 99 (26.3%) 109 (28.9%) 208 (55.2%)
Alienation from the religious teachings Strongly Agree 125 (33.2%) 113 (30.0%) 238 (63.1%) χ2= 27.565

P=0.000

Agree 4(1.1%) 15 (4.0%) 19 (5.0%)
Undecided 8 (2.1%) 42 (11.1%) 50 (13.3%)
Disagree 8 (2.1%) 13 (3.4%) 21 (5.6%)
Strongly Disagree 24 (6.4%) 25 (6.6%) 49 (13.0%)
Dominancy of cultural values over religion Strongly Agree 129 (34.2%) 141 (37.4%) 270 (71.6%) χ2= 11.015

P=0.025

Agree 32 (8.5%) 43 (11.4%) 75 (19.9%)
Undecided 8 (2.1%) 21 (5.6%) 29 (7.7%)
Disagree 0(0.00%) 3(0.8%) 3(0.8%)
Existence of honour killing in all religious sects Strongly Agree 118 (31.3%) 136 (36.1%) 254 (67.4%) χ2= 52.348

P=0.000

Agree 0 (0.00%) 27 (7.2%) 27 (7.2%)
Undecided 26 (6.9%) 14 (3.7%) 40 (10.6%)
Disagree 1 (0.3%) 21 (5.6%) 22 (5.8%)
Strongly Disagree 24 (6.4%) 10 (2.7%) 34 (9.0%)
Religious clerics often speak about honour killing in religious sermons Strongly Agree 0(0.00%0 4(1.1%) 4(1.1%) χ2= 5.862

P=0.210

Agree 11 (2.9%) 23(6.1%) 34(9.0%)
Undecided 20(5.3%) 22(5.8%) 42(11.1%)
Disagree 9(2.4%) 11(2.9%) 20(5.3%)
Strongly Disagree 129(34.2%) 148(39.3%) 277(73.5%)
Lack of factual religious knowledge Strongly Agree 104 (27.6%) 127 (33.7%) 231 (61.3%) χ2= 12.084

P=0.017

Agree 4 (1.1%) 15 (4.0%) 19 (5.0%)
Undecided 25 (6.6%) 27 (7.2%) 52 (13.8%)
Disagree 26 (6.9%) 37 (9.8%) 63 (16.7%)
Strongly Disagree 10 (2.7%) 2 (0.5%) 12 (3.2%)

Religion is one of the leading institutions molding human behavior on the basis of dictating approach to the predictive ends. It usually entails the explanation pertaining to pious and profane, reward and punishment for the only purpose of maintaining social order in a society.

The above table revealed the relationship between religion and honour killing. The results indicated a significant relationship (P=0.023) between the importance of religion in the lives of the local people and honour killing. These findings explored the important role of religion in the lives of the local people. Religion encompasses values and belief system, ideology of physical and spiritual aspects of life with the provision of an anticipated shooter to the anticipated threats being faced by the followers in either walk of life. Islam as religion is often misunderstood and misinterpreted for dictating patriarchy and subordinate position of a woman. Local customs and tradition of Pakhtun culture had been in limelight in terms of deliverance and implementation with putting high values of esteemed and respect over religious practices in certain instance like honour killing. Islam does provide a window of opportunity to an offender to be prosecuted through well-established code of punishment. However, Pakhtun as nation and culture do believe in exercising this authority by putting the mandates into the hand of the effectees. In most of the leading religions, Islam has been related to long and sordid reality of woman oppression[46]. Gill (2006) has also explored that religions are under the tremendous pressure from the local culture and sub-cultures on ethnic basis[47].

Contrary to the above, a non-significant relationship (P=0.122) resulted between permission in Islam and honour killing. Islam never encourages honour killing in any form and manifestation. The religion of Islam has been categorically refusing and discouraging the act of killing on the basis of honour. Islam as a religion contains a complete code of life. This code of life entails the provision of access to sex, its denial to sex with explicit emphasis and restrictions in the form of reward and punishment. People of the study area had strict adherence to it in theoretical perspectives. However, they tend to observe and exercise their own customary normative behavior for maintaining the prevalent social order. In this regard Kocturk (1992) stated that the applied honour ethics to the women sexuality is not specific to the religion of Islam but as well existed in many other non-Islamic societies[48]. Henceforth, Islam has inscribed crystal clear injunctions only for the punishment of illicit sexual intercourse as it is mentioned in the Holy Quran, which instructs that the adulterous woman and man should be punished provided meeting out the valid witness’s procedure lay down in this regard. Furthermore, it has also been explained under the Hudood Ordinance (1979)[49] of the Government of Pakistan, which says that “’Zina’ (adultery) is liable to ‘Hadd’(Islamic punishment), if it is committed by an adult man who is not insane with a woman to whom he is not, and does not suspect himself to be married or if it is committed by an adult woman who is not insane with a man to whom she is not, and does not suspect herself to be married. Secondly, Islam portrays punishment variation to the nature of offense, committed on part of the adulterer i.e. a public stoning is decreed upon a married man and woman who undergo for sex intercourse etc”. The result of present study were also inconsonance with the findings of Faqir (2001)[50] and Vitoshka (2010)[51] who elaborated that Islam does not permit honour killing. The occurrence of honour killing is dated back to the pre-Islamic era.[52]

Furthermore, a highly significant relationship (P=0.000) was found between alienation from the religious teaching and honour killing. These results indicated that tribal people always prefer their own way of observing conventions and usages. The collective behaviour of tribal people by and large reinforced the social behaviour imposed by their own traditions as advocated by Fateh (2012) who added that the problem of honour killing cannot be categorized to a particular cast or region, rather it is a cultural issue, persists across the borders and beyond a specific religion[53]. The Islamic pattern of punishment liabilities and honour killing cases are much clear and simple. It always focuses on the actual occurrence of ‘Zina’ (adultery) between the two adult man and woman which are not married with each other. But on the contrary, tribal customs punish both male and female on the basis of pre-marital sexual relations, extra marital relations, refusal of an arrange marriage, elopement, and lastly, falling in love with someone which are unacceptable to family patriarch. Similar findings were also put forwarded by Fadel (2006) who stated that some ignorant people tries to justify honour killing according to the teachings of Islam but in reality the true spirit of Islam opposes honour based violence.[54] Henceforth, when an insult or honour related offence(s) occurs, then a customary or normative pressure exerting on the dishonoured or insulted person to restore his lost honour in tribal society. In this respect, he will be guided by the inscribed customary code and not the religion to do something for the restoration of honour. Honour based societies are always trying to prefer honour even if religion abhors, their priorities would be only limited to remove social pressure through conveyance of a message to the offender who trespassed the threshold of honour to bear enormous consequences. “After insult or offence occurs, there is great normative pressure on the insulted person, exerts to avenge”.[55]

Likely, a significant relationship (P=0.025) observed between dominance of cultural values over religion and honour killing. Pakhtun tribal culture is representing the functional approach towards maintaining the social order through its own devised ways of social pattern. These ways and means are governed by a civilized assumption of Pakhtunwali. Pakhtunwali interprets and explains the occurrence of an event through its own traditional mechanism of life while not taking any impetus from other hearsays. These findings had close association to Lodhi & Siddiqui (2014) who concluded that some of the traditional rituals and laws are both morally and philosophically acceptable due to prevailing ignorance and cultural dominancy[56]. These results indicated that it is a recognized fact that the canvass of culture is much broader than the religion and religion is the one single component of it. So, it is also clear from the previous debate that the forces of cultural values reinforces and dominates the whole tribal spectrum in the holistic way. When Islam integrated with the centuries old unwritten codes of the ‘Pakhtun’, popularly known as ‘Pakhtunwali’, it predominantly indigenized Islamic principles with the famous code of the tribal unwritten constitutions. Similarly, Khattak, Muhammad and Lee (2014) had also endorsed these results by stating that the unwritten laws of ‘Pakhtunwali’are both culture and social patterns of life for the ‘Pakhtuns’. This code of conduct is so much dear for ‘Pakhtuns’ that it somehow gained the status of fifth religion[57]. In ‘Pakhtun’ tribal setup, if conflict occurs between customary codes and Islamic principles, customary codes always prevails. Honour killing is attached with the patriarchal tribal values and customs which demands to protect man honour. However, the socio-political structure is stronger than the religion.[58],[59],[60]

Likewise, a highly significant relationship (P=0.000) explored between the existence of honour killing in all religious sects and honour killing. These results suggested that honour killing equally prevailed in both religious sects (Sunni and Shia) of the study universe. It could also be inferred that cultural value preservations were more mandatory over the religious values. Furthermore, the significant result (P=0.025) of the cultural dominance over religion explored that honour killing was more cultural than religious. These findings not only endorsed the preceding findings but also indicated towards the strong role of cultural dynamics, believing in its own perpetuation, despite having scathing effects to religion, as these were mostly misunderstood to be religious in nature. According to Chesler (2009) who explained honour killing phenomena in garbs of maintaining the prevalent code of morality, behavioral outcomes, truly signifying the fundamental religious hearsays.[61] These results could also be supported by the famous customary local code ‘Turizuna’ (1944)[62] which was unanimously drafted and enacted by both the tribal elders of ‘Shia’and ‘Sunni’ sects. Irrespective of sectarian differences, the people of the area shared same genealogy, history and cultural orientation. Beyond their intra-religious contradictions, they perceive honour norms equally according to the prescribed indigenous code of the area which could be observed in the prevalence of the practice of honour killing in both the sects.

Contrary to the above, a non-significant relationship (P=0.210) intimated between religious clerics speaking about the issue in religious sermons and honour killing. Although honour killing is a heinous crime, and does not find any space for itself in the religious code of life but silence on part of religious scholars had the outcome of strong emphasis on cultural values. These cultural values had a strict and rigid structural and functional trait, which resist any kind of new values to replace its operational social patterns. It is observed that most of the religious clerics of the area are ‘Pakhtun’by descent. They are socialized in ‘Pakhtun’social structure similar to other common members of the society. Their orientation in the socio-cultural milieu of ‘Pakhtun’ society is similar to that of others. Religious subjugation by the cultural values had put the religion and its customs in a fragile arena to defend the differentiation between culture and religion. Rather cultural interpretations are often seemed and adjudged as religious to meet their own vested interests. Opposing cultural values are meant as cultural taboos, which is mostly avoided by religious scholars in Asian societies.[63], [64],[65],[66]

However, a significant relationship (P=0.017) extracted between lack of factual religious knowledge and honour killing. The results indicated that lack of true religious knowledge about honour killing might be one of the reasons of increased rate of honour killing in the study universe. Mostly, fabricated and misinterpreted knowledge of Islam has been internalized in ‘Pakhtun’society in general and tribal societies in particular. Though religious clerics were fully versed in religious knowledge but they had limited role of interplaying with religious and cultural knowledge in the capacity of compromising to meeting out their own interests. In such a twisted situation, sometimes their personal biases and prejudices dominate religion while in other situation the cultural norms are camouflaged with religious injunctions while explaining any social issue including honour killing. Inglehard & Baker (2000) contend that due to the reason of religious integration into culture, some cultural values are so strongly dominated and even modernization cannot change these practices[67]. This un-eventuality in most of the tribal people is the outcomes of interpretations in true and fabricated explanation of religion of Islam and culture. The internalization of misinterpreted and fabricated knowledge of religion created room for mass misunderstanding of religion which in return visibly supports the customary practices of honour killing in the area. Moreover, in most of the cases people were specialized and trained in ‘Fiqhi Masayel’(Islamic Juridical questions), while avoiding familial issues which ultimately create a gap between religious knowledge and familial issues. Among these familial issues, respect and right of woman is considered the most over shadowed and neglected aspect for religious research. This has in turn led to the emergence of common fallacy and disbeliefs, explicitly lacking the vision and anticipation to assess the issue of honour killing but to rely on to the customary and normative ways of life. Similarly, Fadel (2006) accounted that ignorant people who hold outworn, traditional views and ideas tries to prove honour killing as just and right according to Islam but in actual honour killing is forbidden in Islam and there is no mention in ‘Quran’(Holy book of Muslim) and ‘Hadiths’(verbal instructions and deeds of the Prophet Muhammad P.B.U.H) that killing in the name of honour is allowed[68]. Islam abhors the honour killing rather providing extreme respect and esteem to each and every soul and does not allow any transgression upon anybody in any sort of manifestation.[69]

Multi-Variate Analysis:

Marital Status Religious aspect Honour Killing Total Statistics
Married Agree Disagree
Agree 87(24.8) 111(31.7) 198(56.5) X2=0.020

P=0.990

Disagree 66(18.9) 86(24.6) 152(43.5)
Unmarried Agree 10(37) 4(14.8) 14(51.8) X2=4.059

P=0.131

Disagree 6(22.2) 7(25.9) 13(48.1)

The relationship between honour killing and religious aspect while controlling marital status, was non-significant both in married (P>0.990) and unmarried people (P>0.131). These results revealed that the phenomenon of honour killing is above religious consideration, rather indicated towards deep customary practices for the sole purpose of social and cultural maintainability. These findings areinconsonance to Bhatti et al., (2011) who stated that honour killing is a culturally approved phenomena which is comprehensively intermingled in tribal and feudal practices of patriarchy sans religious considerations.[70],[71]

Conclusion and Recommendations:

The study concluded that religion occupies greater importance in the lives of tribal people. However, Islam clearly discourages honour killing in all forms and manifestations, as it has been categorically refusing and discouraging such act of killing.But in contrast to the teachings and sprit of Islam, local customs and tradition of ‘Pakhtun’ culture had been in limelight in terms of deliverance and implementation with putting high values of esteemed and respect over religious practices in certain instance like honour killing.Because tribal people always prefer their own way of observing conventions and usages by imposing and reinforcing their own tribal traditions.Moreover, honour killing equally prevailed in both religious sects (Sunni and Shia) of the study universe due to preservation oftheir own cultural values. Although honour killing is a heinous crime, and does not find any space for itself in the religious code of life but silence on part of religious scholars had the outcome of strong emphasis on cultural values.Furthermore, results indicated that the lack of true religious knowledge about honour killing might be the reasons of increased rate of honour killing in the area. As mostly, fabricated and misinterpreted knowledge of Islam has been internalized in ‘Pakhtun’society in general and tribal societies in particular. At multi-varite level, the study concluded that the phenomenon of honour killing is above religious consideration, rather indicated towards deep customary practices for the sole purpose of social and cultural maintainability.


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