Ahmedabad woman killed by husband in Pak, claims family

A 39-year-old woman from Ahmedabad, who had moved to Karachi in 2000 after marrying a Pakistani national, has allegedly been killed by her husband, her family claimed on Wednesday.

In August last year, The Indian Express had reported that the woman, Shabnam Khan, wanted to return home from Pakistan. She had told this newspaper on August 29, 2012 that she was never allowed to step outside her husband's house. Shabnam, earlier known as Shirley Ann Hodges, had converted to Islam to marry Gul Mohammad Khan in 1998.

Shabnam's family members claimed they came to know about the reported incident on Wednesday. "I came to know about it today morning through an email (sent by a Pakistan Human Rights Commission official) that she was shot dead on December 4. We are clueless about everything as there is no official confirmation. We don't know whether it's true or a hoax. I am worried about my two young nieces," said Noel Hodges, Khan's brother. "Later today, I called up investigating officer of the case sub-inspector Mehboob Ali who confirmed me the news. He told me that my brother-in-law was lodged at Malir jail in Karachi," said Hodges.

Hodges added that he last spoke to his sister through video-chat on Skype on December 3. Shabnam had reportedly been telling her family members in Ahmedabad through video calls that she wanted to return.

He claimed that the email he received today was signed by one Abdul Hai, a PHRC official. The email said Shabnam had been killed, it did not mention how and whether her two daughters were safe, Hodges said. "I tried to talk to Asma Jahangir (human rights activist), Gagan Sethi (Ahmedabad-based activist) and other prominent activists in Pakistan but to no avail. We want to know what exactly happened to my sister and the whereabouts of her daughters. Where is my brother-in-law? If he is in jail, we need to see his face," said Hodges.

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