Daughter 'possessed by demons'


Dec 8, 2006

Pakistani police have arrested a man accused of murdering his 22-year-old daughter because he said she was possessed by demons.

The incident took place on Thursday in the remote village of Dus Ale in Harappa district in Punjab province.

Police say the father, Jamal Arain, confessed to killing his daughter with a butcher's knife.

They say he also confessed to putting the body on a pyre, with the help of his sons, and setting it on fire.

'Charred to bone'

The men were arrested as news of the incident filtered out of the remote area.

Local police also recovered the body, '"which was charred to the bone" according to Falak Sher, the police official in charge.

Police say Mr Arain told them a "churail' (female demon) had possessed his daughter a few days ago and threatened to kill him and his sons.

The father said that on Thursday the churail attacked his daughter and he killed her before the demon could take full control of her body.

According to police, the father said his daughter's possession had stemmed from the time of her recent engagement.

He added that soon after her engagement she set her dowry on fire.

Every year hundreds of women are killed in Pakistan in disputes over their right to marry of their own will.

The culprits are usually family members and the motives stated for the murder are either outlandish or honour based.

If the culprits are family members, they often escape punishment as under Pakistan's Islamic laws, the victim's family has the right to forgive the culprits.