LAHORE, Pakistan (Reuters) - A student stabbed a college professor to death on Wednesday in eastern Pakistan on Wednesday, apparently because he felt that a planned party that women were going to be involved with would be un-Islamic, a police official said.
Khalid Hameed, an English professor at the Government Sadiq Egerton College in Bahawalpur, was preparing for the farewell party when one of his students attacked him with a dagger, police said.
“Apparently, the accused has no link to any religious group but we are investigating about his past and the reasons behind his mindset,” local police official Farhan Hussain said. He added that the motive given by the alleged attacker was Hameed’s decision to hold the party.
The student, Khateeb Hussain, was in policy custody and was being charged with murder, police said.
The attacker was wrestled to the ground by students present at the party rehearsal but they could not save Hameed, who died of his wounds after being taken to a local hospital, college principal Wali Muhammad told Reuters.
Egerton College is one of few institutions in Pakistan with a majority female student population, with 4,000 women attending alongside 2,000 male students, Muhammad said. The dead professor had been due to retire in four months.
Religion and gender are sensitive topics in Pakistan, where women’s rights are often described as un-Islamic by right-wing religious groups.
Last year, a school principal was shot and killed after reprimanding a student for missing classes to attend a protest organized by an ultra-right wing Islamist group. The student equated the teacher’s words with blasphemy, police said.
This month, a women’s march was condemned by the country’s religious right and its organizers were threatened with rape and death for publicly demonstrating against taboo topics such as sexual harassment and the demonization of divorce, and for calling out men for not doing housework.
A Thomson Reuters Foundation poll found Pakistan to be the sixth most dangerous country for women in 2018.
Writing by Saad Sayeed; Editing by Frances Kerry