I would think the idea of an arranged marriage would be a thing of the past, especially in the United States of America. Apparently it isn’t in Clayton County Georgia, for the family of a man from Pakistan. Getting past the thought of being in a fixed marriage what is one to do if they are not happy in that marriage. The answer is nothing. To get a divorce is unheard of.

Sandela Kanwal, 25, lived with her parents and sister while her husband lived in Chicago. They hadn’t seen each other in three months. Sandela wasn’t happy in her arranged marriage and wanted a divorce. This didn’t go over well with her father, 57 year old Chaudhry Rashad when she discussed it with him early Sunday morning. They argued over it and he ended up killing her according to Officer Tim Owens with the Clayton County Police Department.

Rashad’s wife, Gina Rashad, 49, woke up hearing screaming in a language she didn’t understand. She got scared and left the house and went to call the police. She told the police that Kanwal had not spoken to her father in two months because of their disagreement in her wanting a divorce. Kanwal was found by police on her bed. She appeared to have been strangled with a cord or some other implement.
Anand Mehta, who is from India but has been in the U. S. for more than 20 years, is also in an arranged marriage but his turned out to be a happy one. He says he does understand the staunch cultural stigma against divorce. “People in our community take it a step further, if your marriage doesn’t work out, there is not way out of it,” said Mehta.

Vernonda Luckett says no one in this small community thought something like this could possibly have happened. She has lived on Utah Drive for 14 years across the street and three houses down from the Rashad family. “That’s very sad. She was a beautiful young lady, she said about the victim. Luckett said she often saw Sandela driving through the neighborhood.

Mehta and others can’t figure out how Sandela wanting a divorce could have driven her father to kill her. Mehta said, “And if you don’t understand your own blood, who will?”

The Clayton County Police arrested Rashad and took him to the Clayton County Jail. He reportedly has confessed to strangling his daughter.

Jan Barrett

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