Islamabad: Popular social media celebrity Qandeel Baloch, also a model and actor, was strangled to death by her brother in yet another “honour killing” in Pakistan, police said on Saturday. Qandeel, known for posting bold videos and statements on Facebook, was killed by her own brother at the family home on the outskirts of Multan in Punjab, media reports said.
Qandeel’s brother had been threatening her over her Facebook posts and videos, said the police. The brother fled after murdering Qandeel, whose real name is Fauzia Azeem, Dawn newspaper said. Her father told the police that she was strangled by his son, The News International said.
The murder took place when she was sleeping in her room, said her parents, who were asleep on the rooftop. There were no signs of bleeding and she seemed to have been strangled to death, a police officer said.
Qandeel, who became famous through her tireless self-promotion and suggestive “selfies” posted on social media, had amassed tens of thousands of followers. “Nothing is good in this society. This patriarchal society is bad,” she said in a recent interview.
Three weeks ago, Qandeel wrote to Interior Minister and the Senior Superintendent of Police in Islamabad asking them to provide security to her.
She had said her life was in danger and that she was being threatened via calls on her mobile number. “I need security from you,” she said. The model seemed to be troubled in the last few days, Geo News Multan Bureau Chief said. “The last I called her for an interview, she was crying on the phone,” he said.
She was planning to settle down abroad after Eidul Fitr, citing security reasons. Qandeel was derided and feted in equal measure in Pakistan. According to Dawn, her videos had been viewed more than 830,000 times and garnered thousands of likes.
She first shot to fame in Pakistan in 2014 after a video of her pouting for the camera.
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