MULTAN: Brother of slain social media celebrity Qandeel Baloch confessed to killing her over ‘honour’ and feeling proud of it.
“I had made up my mind to kill her when her controversial video with Mufti Abdul Qavi went viral on social media,” said 25-year-old Muhammad Waseem, who was tracked down by police via his cellphone SIM late Saturday night.
Waseem, a drug addict, was referring to a video and selfies Qandeel uploaded on her Facebook and Twitter accounts with the cleric, Mufti Abdul Qavi, in Ramazan. The selfies went viral on social media and triggered a spat between her and the cleric on broadcast media, following which Qavi was suspended from Ruet-e-Hilal committee.
“I had made up my mind that day, and I was waiting for my sister to come to come home in Dera Ghazi Khan or nearby Multan district,” Waseem told the media at the office of CPO Multan DIG Azhar Akram after his arrest. “I have no regrets. Instead I am proud of what I did,” he added. “I have earned a place in heaven by relieving the agony of my parents and family.”
“I drugged her using sleeping pills and then strangled her to death,” Waseem said, adding he did not have any accomplice in this act. “We are Baloch and as Baloch we cannot tolerate [Qandeel’s immodesty],” he added. “Though I’m a drug addict, I murdered her in my senses,” he said, confirming that it was a premeditated murder.
Qandeel drove a large social media fan-base, with more than 43,000 Twitter followers and 700,000 fans on Facebook. She frequently posted pictures considered suggestive by conservatives, inviting criticism and misogynist abuse online.
A couple of days ahead of her murder, Qandeel declared herself a “modern day feminist”, and an “inspiration to those [women] who are treated badly”.
However, Waseem did not approve of her ideas. “Girls are supposed to stay at home and honour family traditions, but she defied them,” he said. “My friends used to taunt me by sharing her risqué videos and pictures on my cellphone.”
Waseem, who said he has decided not to hire a lawyer, recorded his confessional statement in court on Sunday. “I saved my family’s honour and I’m ready for any punishment,” he said.
The judge subsequently handed him over to police on seven-day remand. -Samaa