The mother of slain Pakistani model Qandeel Baloch on Monday alleged that prominent cleric Mufti Abdul Qawi, who also appeared in the controversial selfies with the social media star, “provoked” her son into murdering her daughter.
The 26-year-old model’s mother’s statement came on the same day when police announced that Mufti Qawi would be part of the murder investigation of the slain social media sensation.
Police had arrested Qandeel’s brother Muhammad Waseem on Saturday. He has admitted to strangling his sister to death for the “honour of the family ”. Waseem said he gave her a tablet to subdue his sister and then strangled her in their family home over the weekend.
Waseem said he killed his sister due to her social media activities, which included a series of risque video posts with the prominent cleric, Mufti Qawi.
Qawi was suspended from the Ruet-e-Hilal committee in the controversy following the video posts.
Speaking to Geo News on Monday, Qandeel’s mother accused Mufti Qawi, her daughter’s former husband Ashiq Hussain, and a man name Shahid of being involved in the murder.
She claimed her son Waseem carried out the murder on the advice of Mufti Qawi, and that the cleric “provoked” him into killing Qandeel. She claimed Waseem was also in contact with Qandeel’s former husband Ashiq Hussain.
Earlier on Monday, police announced that Mufti Qawi would be included in the murder investigation of Qandeel.
“We have decided to include Mufti Abdul Qawi in the murder investigation,” said Azhar Ikram, the police chief in Multan where Baloch was killed.
“The scope of the investigation has been widened. The victim’s brother, Aslam, will also be investigated. We are waiting for the forensic reports,” Ikram said.
Reacting to the move of the police, Mufti Qawi said that he was willing to cooperate if approached by the police.
However, he said that it was “ridiculous” that he had been included in the murder investigation when the murderer had already confessed to the crime.
Prior to her death, Qandeel Baloch, whose real name was Fauzia Azeem, spoke of worries about her safety and had appealed to the interior ministry to provide her with security.
No help was provided and the interior ministry has not commented on her death.
In Facebook posts, she, spoke of trying to change “the typical orthodox mindset” of people in Pakistan. She faced frequent abuse and death threats but continued to post provocative pictures and videos.
The so-called ‘honour-killing’ has sent shockwaves across the country and triggered an outpouring of grief on social media for Baloch.