Family of ‘killed’ woman fears for lives of her two daughters in Pak

The family of Shirley Ann Hodges-turned-Shabnam Khan (39), who has reportedly been shot dead by her husband in Karachi, wants the custody of her two daughters. The family, which lives in Maninagar area here, reacted angrily to the news of their daughter's alleged killing that reached them 35 days after the incident.

"First they tormented my daughter for 13 years who had been begging to come back to us all these years. Now, when my daughter is no more, we want the authorities of both India and Pakistan to help us in getting the custody of my two granddaughters. We are worried for them," said Sheila Hodges, 60, mother of Shirley.

"Jab maa ko maar dala to bachcho ko wo kya sambhalenge (When they have killed the mother, how would they take care of the children)," said Sheila.

The Hodges said they were clueless about the whereabouts of Shirley's children Chandani (12) and Sanjana (8). "I fear that Chandani might have committed suicide. I requested several people including Abdul Hai, an official of the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) who also denied having information about my nieces," said Noel, Shirley's brother.

He said that on Wednesday night he spoke to Karachi police sub-inspector Mehboob Ali who confirmed the death of Shirley and that she had been buried. But he refused to give any information about the children, Noel claimed.

They said Shirley fell in love with Gul Mohammad in 1997 who was nearly 20 years older than her and married him against their wish in in Ahmedabad in 1998. "Two years after the marriage, he took Shirley to Pakistan saying his relatives live there. He assured us that after six months she will be back. But that six months stretched to 13 years and Shirley never came back," he said.

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