Sajida Tasneem, a mother of three who had arrived in Pakistan from Australia in May on a supposedly short trip, was axed to death allegedly by her father-in-law in Superior Town on June 11, according to the police report.
Tasneem’s only fault was that she had been demanding that her in-laws let her return to Australia with her children whereas her father-in-law Mukhtar Ahmed was adamant that he would not allow his grandchildren to be raised in a Western society.
Police spokesman Abid Hussain told The Express Tribune that the Satellite Town police had registered a murder case against Mukhtar, Sajida’s husband Ayub Ahmed, mother-in-law Fatima Bibi, and Mukhtar’s sons-in-law Furqan and Shehzad.
Police arrested the main accused, Mukhtar Ahmed, while steps were being taken to arrest others “involved in the conspiracy”, the spokesman said. The spokesman said that when Sajida had arrived from Australia, her father-in-law took her and her children’s passports from her under the pretext of safely keeping their documents.
As her scheduled date of departure for Australia drew nearer, Sajida asked her father-in-law for her and her children’s passports.
However, Mukhtar reportedly refused. This attitude shocked Sajida, and it dawned upon her that her in-laws’ insistence on her visiting Pakistan so that they could see their grandchildren had actually been a trap, sources said, citing the investigation.
All this while Sajida’s husband had been missing from the scene, since he lived in Bahrain where he had a job. Sajida Tasneem had not been willing to give in to her father-in-law’s demand that they stayed in Pakistan permanently.
A fully-fledged confrontation ensued, and on June 11 it escalated to the point where Sajida’s father-in-law allegedly axed her to death, the police said.
Sajida Tasneem, who was born in Salanwali tehsil of Sargodha, was a graduate of the NED University of Engineering and Technology in Karachi. Immediately after her graduation, her parents had her married to Muhammad Ayub, a resident of Superior Town in Sargodha. After their marriage, Ayub and Sajida moved to Saudi Arabia where they worked for a while. In the meantime, Sajida got a job offer from a company based in Perth, Australia, in 2013.
Sajida and her husband migrated to Australia. While living their Sajida gave birth to two daughters and a son. Along with her job, Sajida had herself enrolled in some courses to improve her career prospects.
After a few years, the family succeeded in obtaining the status of permanent residents.
Then appeared the coronavirus pandemic, and Sajida’s husband Ayub lost his job. He started working online. However, when the online work did not go well, he started applying for jobs in the Gulf countries. He was offered a good job in Bahrain, which he accepted immediately and moved to the state while Sajida and their children continued to live in Australia.
Before moving to Bahrain, Sajida’s husband Ayub and in-laws started insisting that she and the children visit Pakistan to meet their grandparents. Initially, Sajida had been reluctant to make the visit, but when the pressure on her increased, she thought she would make a short visit to Pakistan to have her children meet their grandparents and then return to Australia.
Meanwhile, Sajida’s father Sher Muhammad Khan has taken the custody of her three children.
He said he had never, ever raised his voice while talking to her, but “my daughter was brutally killed”.
Published in The Express Tribune, June 26th, 2022.