Father beheads daughter, then walks with severed head to the police station

A father who beheaded his daughter and carried her severed head to the village police station in India’s Uttar Pradesh state was arrested.

Sarvesh Kumar said he attacked his 17-year-old daughter with an axe on Wednesday in anger over her relationship with a man.

Images of the man carrying the girl’s head were shared widely on social media, reigniting demands from women’s campaigners for a specific law against honour killings to help protect potential victims and improve police investigations.

India recorded 24 honour killings in 2019. Two years earlier, Uttar Pradesh registered 14 of the country’s 92 such killings, the government’s crime data shows.

Campaigners say government statistics on honour killing mask the scale of the crime, with women at greater risk than men.

“Almost 70 percent of the victims in honour killings are women, and almost all of them are from the upper caste,” Arockiya Samy Kathir, the founder of non-profit Evidence said.

Human rights groups say thousands of women and girls are killed across South Asia and the Middle East each year by family members angered at perceived damage to their “honour”.