A cry for justice for a vile crime

The beloved Prophet (SAAW) stated that “and when a girl is born, then she brings two Noors.” A daughter is considered a blessing for parents. The name “Noor” itself simply means “light” or “light of Allah” which further requires no more words to emphasize what their daughter must’ve meant for Mr. and Mrs. Mukadam. Those parents who spent 27 years nurturing, loving and devoting their lives to the upbringing of their daughter are standing outside Press Club just to get justice for their daughter. Is this how just the system of Pakistan law is? The fact that a murder that took place in July 2021and is still taking new twists and turns everyday none of which precede towards justice makes us all leave with one question on our minds. Will Noor get justice?
In the last few years, especially the year of 2021, Pakistan has seen plentiful cases of violence and harassment, each fairly terrifying. One, however, let the whole nation in awe and horripilation.
Noor Mukadam was born on October 23, 1993. She was 27 years old and was the daughter of a former diplomat, Shaukat Mukadam. A few months back, the nation was left in shock when Noor was found in a gut-wrenching state at a house in Sector F-7/4, Islamabad on 21st July 2021. She was allegedly brutally tortured with a knuckle duster, raped, shot and beheaded by the 27 years old Zahir Jaffer, the son of a leading businessman. Later, on July 26th 2021, Zahir confessed to the crime in his statement which was being recorded. It is in the talks that he had allegedly disclosed his intention to kill Noor in case she refused to accept Zahir’s marriage proposal.
Last stepping out of Zahir’s house, Noor was spotted barefooted getting into a taxi with Zahir and was claimed to be awfully quiet by the taxi driver as he said, “Noor was silent throughout the entire trip while Zahir continued to speak to her”. They both returned back midway from the airport since Zahir had been confused about taking the flight to New York since the very start considering his conversation with his travel agent few hours before the flight.
Noor’s father got concerned and tried to contact her to identify her whereabouts. She received several messages, and voice recorded messages from her family and friends however there was no response. Conversely, according to the police before Noor’s phone was snatched by Zahir, she had sent her last message to her mother, details of which have not been disclosed. Noor was held in captivity thereafter until she was brutally murdered and is yet to get justice.
Zahir Jaffer, a relentless and triumphant murderer, is somehow escaping his deserving punishmentwhile his parents, since day one tried to conceal his acts. A leaked audio-tape was discovered where after the murder upon being informed about the situation, instead of calling the police called Therapy works, a counselling and psychotherapy center in order to help him conceal the situation. Officials informed that the suspects father asked the employees at Therapy Work to shift him to their clinic and claim that he had been a patient there in order to make his defense strong. Therapy Works CEO Tahir Zahoor Ahmed in a Press conference declared his support to the victim by clearly acknowledging that Zahir was a rational man and had no such disease and was in the right mental health as he quoted “Zahir was an alcoholic, not insane”.
Zahir’s actions do not come as a surprise to the general public since he does not come with great reputation himself. He had been deported from the United Kingdom for being involved in sexual harassment case. Upon recovering his phones data, it has also been identified that he had been involved in violence against women.
Noor tried to run for her life. What sane woman would willingly jump from a balcony? Undoubtedly, a woman who was fraught and had no other way out. It has been reported that Noor tried to escape by jumping through the balcony and somehow reached the security guards room but unfortunate for her, the security guard fearfully handed her over back to Zahir result of which came known to the entire world. Her life could have been saved had the accomplices acted otherwise.
The murder and beheading of the 27 years old victim awakened a rage amongst thousands of people who are raising their voice, pressurizing the authorities to take the case to a final end. The hashtag #justicefornoor stormed the internet right after the news of this gruesome murder circulated over the media. From family, friends, general public to celebrities, all condemned Noor’s murder and raised their voice,but till date no such judgment or decision have been passed by the authorities.
Although Prime Minister, Imran Khan guided the Islamabad Police to “make no concessions” while probing the murder and emphasised the delivery of justice. “We all have daughters. I would like to ask the opposition to stand united with us on this” he added.People are being arrested and being bailed. This may indicate that the police are working on the investigation but simultaneously, it also raises many questions and increases a lot of insecurities whether or not justice will be served and the higher authorities will finally come to a decision or twill they leave the hook hanging till everyone eventually forgets about the incident.
Mukadam who served the country as an ambassador and is the father of the victim assured that Zahir was a sane man and this certainly cannot be used as an excuse to escape the murder. This man was witnessed by the gate-keeper and the house helps who did nothing to stop this. This case is as simple as the fact that the predator Zahir Jaffer was caught, and caught with the weapon which was allegedly used to torture and brutally murder and slaughter her. What more evidence does it require? What are the questions that arise? As said by Mukadam, “this is a clear-cut case. The killer is standing right before us”.
Noor’s family, including her father and her sister, her friends along with civil society activists organized a vigil outside the National Press Club Islamabad holding placards quoted, “Eye for an eye, tooth for a tooth, life for a life”. It is evident that her loved ones will not sit in silence until justice is served. Mukadam has served as an ambassador and all he seeks is justice for his daughter in return. Is that too much to ask for? The evidence is clear. The ruthless murderer was caught with the weapon at the crime scene, there’s evidence, there’s witness yet the case is still left on a cliffhanger while her sobbing parents wait for their daughter to get justice and the country awaits to proudly claim that the system has fairly served the ambassador who spent his entire life serving the country.
As the entire country impatiently waits, the courtdistributed copies of challan for framing of charges against 12 suspects including Zahir Jaffer, his parents, Zakir Jaffer, Asmat Adamjee and three house helps. The court will be set for another hearing on October 6, 2021 where Noor’s devastated family will stand again to seek a fair-play for their daughter who was brutally killed by a maniac in all his senses and there is absolutely no excuse for such actions.
As the entire country waits for Noor to get integrity, many want an eye for an eye and life for a life. If one abuser is publicly punished for his actions, it is out of a question that another man would ever dare to attempt such an inhumane act. Abuses and murders have had at a tremendousincrease in the last few years in Pakistan. It is out of question and has no doubt that if you were to open up your Facebook application now and scroll a bit here and there, you would come across a heart wrenching incident that would have happened in your country and yet, the poor soul would be waiting for justice to be served. Had the first criminal been punished publicly, the second lunatic would’ve thought twice before moving his arm towards the crime. But we failed. We raise our voices for a day or two, we reshare Instagram and Facebook posts, we share our statuses condemning murders, we use hashtags but then what happens? We eventually sleep over it and forget about it until we see another incident which horripilate’s our skin and runs goose bumps up our spines.
This time, voices must be raised, cries must be heard and justice must be served. If it won’t happen today, it will never happen tomorrow. An eye for an eye, a life for a life. #justiceforNoorMukadam.

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