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Pakistani children plea for father in acid killing

Written by: Staff

KARACHI, Sep 12: The children of a man on trial for murder after throwing acid on his wife's face at their home in a shanty town in southern Pakistan pleaded today before a court to pardon their father.

A civil court in Karachi heard how Maqbool Hussain, a security guard, threw the acid in a fit of rage last December and his wife died in hospital a month later.

''We don't want to lose our father also. What he did was wrong but he is our father,'' Nadia Hussain, 22 and the eldest of five children, told Reuters at the courthouse after they had moved an application asking for clemency.

Her brother Mohammed Asif said that the family had no relatives to support them and they had been living in abject poverty since their father's arrest.

''If our father is released at least he can take care of us and maybe God may forgive him for what he has done,'' Asif said.

The case is unlikely to be settled soon.

''The court has the power to look at the children's plea compassionately. But such cases are not decided very quickly,'' said Iqbal Haider, a senior advocate and head of the Pakistan Human Rights Commission.

If such a case was heard in an Islamic shariah court, a killer could be forgiven by relatives of the victim in return for money.


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