India: Beheaded his pregnant sister with a scythe for not approving her marriage

The teenager allegedly took a selfie with his sister's head

beheading, India

Police in the Indian state of Maharashtra have arrested a teenager on suspicion of beheading of his pregnant sister.

The 19-year-old woman had married a man without the consent of her family, according to local police.

She was making tea for her brother and mother when she was attacked with a scythe. The teenager and his mother surrendered to the police.

Police suspect the teenager took a selfie with the woman's head.

The brother was sent to a reformatory, as his lawyer stated that he was a minor. However, a police official said he would challenge the allegation after a certificate identifying him as an adult was found. The mother is in custody.

The incident took place in Aurangabad province, according to the BBC.

The victim had been "stolen" in June and had married her lover, despite her family's disagreements over their relationship. Although they were both from the same caste, her family did not approve of him because his own family was poorer than theirs.

The young woman did not have much contact with her family after her marriage, but her mother visited her a week before her murder. Police said they knew her daughter was pregnant.

Activists report that thousands of women are murdered every year in India because they fell in love or married someone who was not approved by their family.

These killings are called "honor crimes" as outdated notions of tradition and family honor remain deeply ingrained in many sections of Indian society.

In March, Uttar Pradesh police arrested a man who allegedly beheaded his daughter. He is heard saying in a police video that he killed her because he did not approve of her relationship.