Pakistani Teenager Burned Alive For Rejecting Marriage Proposal

Patricia Ramirez

A Pakistani teenager and school teacher was burned alive after she rejected a marriage proposal. Maria Abbasi died Wednesday from the injuries that she sustained at the hands of five Pakistani men. Reports are conflicting as to the identities of the man behind her murder. According to the Daily Times, one of the teenager's attackers was a co-worker who had proposed. The Daily Mail, however, reports that the Pakistani teenager had rejected the proposal of the co-worker's son, and that it was the father that arranged for her to be violently burned alive.

Eighty-five percent of the Pakistani teenager's body was covered in burns when she succumbed to her injuries.

According to authorities, the horrific, almost unimaginable attack on the Pakistani teenager took place on Monday night, when the rest of her family was out of town attending a funeral. Maria was home alone with her 5-year-old sister. According to her uncle, Rafaqat Abbasi, the Pakistani teenager was babysitting. The teenager's uncle went on to tell the press about the inconceivable moment when the family heard that she had been injured.

"At the funeral her family was alerted that she 'was on fire.' Initially they thought was there had been some sort of accident, perhaps a pipe had burst or something."

When the suspects fled the scene of the brutality, the Pakistani teen was still alive.

When the Pakistani teen's family found her, she was lying on the floor, near death and in indescribable agony.

The Pakistani teenager was taken to the hospital by ambulance, but first her desperate family members had to get her to the awaiting emergency vehicle. According to her uncle, Maria had to be carried to the closest road, because their village of Davel, located outside Murree in northeastern Pakistan, is so rural that it doesn't have proper access roads for ambulances.

"There is no direct major road that passes through the village. We had to carry Maria on a chair to the closest road to get her to an ambulance."

Social media erupted with horror and disgust at the senseless, torturous murder.

Pakistan is notorious for violence against women, reports the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan. Much of the cycle of violence that Pakistani women face can be attributed to the prevalence of the Islamic religion in the country, a religion that demands that women fully submit to men. Just last week, Pakistan made headlines for the demeaning, abusive way that the nation's women are treated. That was when the Council of Islamic Ideology, which counsels and advises the Pakistani government in matters both legal and theological, released a report that said that it was okay (and even advisable) for men to "lightly beat" their wives for disobedience.

The commission's report also stresses that even when crimes against Pakistani women are reported to authorities, prosecution and conviction rates are appallingly low, and in many cases it is members of the law enforcement community committing the crimes.

We can only hope that Pakistan's admittedly misogynistic laws provide some kind of appropriate justice for Maria Abbasi, the Pakistani teenager and school teacher whose life was needlessly cut short in the most vile way imaginable when she was burned alive.

[Photo by Abbasi Family/Twitter]