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Pakistani female journalist shot dead

Shaheena Shaheen, a university student and talk show host, was shot thrice on the night of 5th September, in her house in Balochistan, Pakistan.

She was dropped off at a hospital in critical condition by two men who disappeared later. Surprisingly, one of those men was her husband, Nawabzada Mihrab.

Mahab, whom she married 5-6 months ago in a court wedding, is the prime suspect both of the police and of the family which was confirmed by investigating officers on the case and in the FIR registered by the family. This also seems to be the public opinion as raids were being carried out to find and arrest the husband.

The uncle had leaked information on suspicions on madhab to them. "The killing was the result of domestic violence", Superintendent of Police, Najeebullah Pandrani, had confidently claimed.

Although, it is worth noting that Reporters Without Borders ranked Pakistan scores 145th out of 180 countries in its 2020 World Press Freedom Index, meaning it is one of the most unsafe counties for journalists in the world. Committee to Protect Journalists says 61 Pakistani journalists have been killed in connection with their work since 1992. Furthermore, in 2019, it ranked 164 out of 167 countries on the Women, Peace and Security Index, only above Syria, Afghanistan and Yemen.

This case shows some resemblance to a November case where a man was accused of killing his wife, Arooj Iqbal, who is also a journalist in Lahore. Her body was shifted to her residence for burial, a routine practice that makes it harder for further investigation to take place.

This case is too new for further analysis, hence the common public can only ensure that they maintain peace to honour her and her family, but never let the reasonable doubt slip from their hands.

Reporter: Katyayani Nath

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