Posts Tagged ‘Aqsa Parvez’

Aqsa Parvez


Aqsa Parvez, 16, Canada.

16 year old Aqsa Parvez, youngest of eight siblings, lived in Mississauga, Ontario, Canada with her family of Pakistani origin. Aqsa was 11, when her family migrated to Canada. As a typical teenager she wanted to dress based on her choice, listen to music, get a part-time job and be as other girls at school and neighborhood. However, this did not sit well with her father and siblings and there were constant conflicts regarding her attire and choices.

Her family wanted Aqsa to dress modestly, wear the hijab, imposing restrictions on her movements and social interactions including after school and weekend activities. Aqsa told a counselor at Applewood Heights Secondary School in Mississauga in September of 2007 “that she was afraid her father wanted to kill her …” the school subsequently made arrangements for Aqsa to stay at a shelter, but she only stayed there for three days. Following her return home, her family then permitted her to wear non-traditional clothes to school but the conflicts progressed and got worse. For the second time, Aqsa chose to live at a friend’s place, with constant requests from her family to return home.

On the morning of December 10th 2007, when Aqsa was standing at a bus stop with her friend on her way to school, her brother, 26 year old Muhammad Parvez, a tow truck driver, pulled up and asked Aqsa to come home with him and get more clothes if she was going to live away from home. Half an hour later, Aqsa’s father Waqas Parvez, called 911, telling the police he had “killed his daughter”. When police arrived, Aqsa was immediately taken to hospital in critical condition where she later died. It was revealed that she had been strangled.

Muhammad Parvez and Waqas Parvez pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and faced automatic life sentences. Initially it was believed by police that Muhammad Parvez killed his daughter, but in court it was determined that the brother had strangled Aqsa, it was a premeditated crime. In an interview with police, Aqsa’s mother said her husband told her he killed his youngest child because “my community will say, you have not been able to control your daughter. This is my insult. She is making me naked.”

Aqsa was known among friends and teachers as a bright spark of a child, friendly, caring and loving despite her many challenges. She was progressing in school and friends say all she wanted to do was “to be normal”.
‘At 8, I dream of wild flowers
At 12, of sunsets
At 16, of freedom to see both these bloom and rise
With my own eyes.’
On Earth, as in Heaven,
The wildflowers rise to their creation
Brilliant in color.
The sun glorious in its existence,
Sustaining life.
Undefeated in its purpose to live.
In the will through which it was born.
You remind us of the wildflower,
You are the sun.
Your life shines through
In your decision to live
as you intended.
Free-willed, determined, glorious.
It is for your light,
That you will be remembered.