Honour killing story

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Neelam Kumar
born: 2003
decapitated: 3 March 2021
Location: Hardoi, Uttar Pradesh
Origin: India
Children: none
Perpetrator: her father Sarvesh Kumar
The 17-year-old Neelam Kumar, a student of class 12, was the eldest of four children - three girls and a boy. On March 3, 2021, she was locked in her room by her father Sarvesh Kumar and beheaded with a chopper.

Sarvesh Kumar was seen with Neelam's chopped-off head on the streets of Pandetara. He was on his way to the police station, about 2 km from his village.

Eye witnesses called the police. Two officers came to intercept him, with one of them videotaping the encounter.

They asked him for his name, where he is from and whose head it was. Sarvesh Kumar replied without hesitation, "I did it. There was no one else. I closed the door and did it. The body is in the room."

The Indian father went on to say that he would have killed her lover too, if he could have tracked him down.

Officers asked him to put down the head and he did so without protest.

A video of a police officer holding Neelam's head went viral on social media. The officer working at the Mahila police station was suspended. His supervisor, Laxmi Singh, said it is the responsibility of the police to maintain law and order and that officers should also behave in a disciplined manner. "The officer was holding the head of the decapitated girl and was taking a walk through the police station with it," she said.

What is an honour killing?

An honour killing is a murder in the name of honour. If a brother murders his sister to restore family honour, it is an honour killing. According to activists, the most common reasons for honour killings are as the victim:

Questions about honour killings

  • refuses to cooperate in an arranged marriage.

  • wants to end the relationship.

  • was the victim of rape or sexual assault.

  • was accused of having a sexual relationship outside of marriage.

Human rights activists believe that 100,000 honour killings are carried out every year, most of which are not reported to the authorities and some are even deliberately covered up by the authorities themselves, for example because the perpetrators are good friends with local policemen, officials or politicians. Violence against girls and women remains a serious problem in Pakistan, India, Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, Iran, Serbia and Turkey.

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