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Honour Killings in India: A Study of the Punjab State

Author Affiliations

  • 1 Department of Political Science, Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar, INDIA

Int. Res. J. Social Sci., Volume 3, Issue (6), Pages 7-16, June,14 (2014)


The present study has been conducted through the documented case study as well as the content analysis methods. The study depicts that intolerance of the families to the pre-marital relationships and matrimonial choices of their daughters especially towards inter-caste marriages results into the honour killings. The extent of these causes, resulting into elopements and unpermitted love-marriages further aggravates the situation. The study further observes that in noticeable number of cases honour killings are executed as crimes of passion aroused by sudden provocation when the couples are caught in compromising situations by the family members of the girls. Besides fathers and brothers of the girls, there are direct involvements of their mothers, paternal and/or maternal uncles, family friends and even contract killers into the murders. It has been observed that the centuries old conformist mind set prevailing in the patriarchal society does not accept the girls to establish pre-marital relations or to find males of their own choices to marry with. The patronage of the community and the leniency of the law have made the honour killings frequent trend which possesses socio-cultural legitimacy as well. Therefore, besides constituting rigorous laws and rigid punishments to counter the problem, it is immediately required to change the mindset of the bigoted patriarchic societies to become tolerant towards matrimonial choices of their daughters especially towards inter-caste and inter-religious marriages.


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