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‘Freewill’ couple survives attack outside court

HYDERABAD: As acts of vengeance continue against couples defying their families to marry, another freewill couple joined the list facing death threats. Twenty-six-year-old Sajjad Samoon and Nargis Soomro, 22, tied the knot on August 3 but were lucky enough to survive an attack outside the court only five days later.

On Saturday, the woman claimed at a press conference that her family with the support of the Soomro Ittehad was trying to kill them. “They twice fired shots at our residence [in Benazirabad] and on August 8, they chased us outside the court, trying to kill us,” Nargis alleged.

This is the second such case to emerge this month. On August 1, lawyer Javed Shaikh shot dead his sister Raheela, who had eloped with Zulfiqar Sehto, inside the courtroom of the Sindh High Court, Hyderabad Circuit.

Waseem Soomro, Nargis’s father, is a school teacher and a poet. Sajjad is a graduate and is employed at a private bank in the Benazirabad district. His father, Khalid Hussian Samoon, is a manager in National Cotton Factory. He says his son’s proposal was rejected because the woman’s family wanted her to marry within their community.

After their wedding, an elder of the Samoon community, Ghulam Nabi Samoon, met with Soomros to settle the dispute but failed.

“My wife’s brother and cousins have more problems with our marriage than her parents,” snapped Sajjad. However, a representative of the Soomro Ittehad refuted these charges, saying they mean no harm to the couple “even though they have dishonoured the family”.

“They can live peacefully without any fear,” said Ghulam Mustafa Soomro, a former union council nazim from the Ittehad. “We are not after them.” He told The Express Tribune that Sajjad’s proposal for wedding was not rejected because he belonged to another community. “The man has a criminal record and was already married but he divorced his wife,” he alleged.

Sajjad admitted that he had divorced his first wife due to “family reasons”; however, he denied ever being charged with any crime. But the couple now fears registration of a bundle of fake cases against them. They have filed a petition in the Sindh High Court, demanding protection. The court has summoned the respondents, including the police, on August 15

The Express Tribune