Killing of Zohra Shah

2020 beating death in Punjab, Pakistan

Zohra Shah (Urdu: زہرہ شاہ) was an eight-year-old Pakistani domestic worker (or slave) of a married couple, Hassan Siddiqui and Umme Kulsoom.[1] She was tortured and killed for mistakenly releasing her employers’ parrots in Bahria Town, Rawalpindi on 1 June 2020.[2][3][4] Her death caused an outcry in Pakistan and led to legislative changes which outlawed child domestic labour in the country.[5]

Zohra Shah
زہرہ شاہ
Born24 March 2012
Died1 June 2020 (aged 8)
Cause of deathBeating
Known forCrime victim

Early life


She was from Basti Maso Shah in Muzaffargarh District of southern Punjab approximately 580 kilometres from the capital, Islamabad.



Allegedly, she was murdered for releasing valuable parrots from their cages.[6] Evidence such as 'older scars and marks'[1] suggest Shah had been repeatedly abused while working for Siddiqui and Kulsoom, and 'wounds on her thighs' were 'consistent with sexual assault'.[1]



Siddiqui and Kulsoom were arrested and put on judicial remand.[1]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Xari Jalil (12 June 2020). "Pakistan: 8-Year-Old Zohra Shah, a Caged Soul Killed for Setting Birds Free". The Wire. Retrieved 5 October 2020.
  2. "Pakistan: Seven-year-old domestic worker beaten to death for freeing birds, tweeps demand #JusticeForZohraShah". Gulf News. 3 June 2020. Retrieved June 11, 2020.
  3. Tribune, EMEA (5 June 2020). "Zohra Shah 8 Years old Minor Girl Killed For Releasing Parrots from Cage". EMEA Tribune. Archived from the original on 2020-10-05. Retrieved 2020-10-06.
  4. "Zohra Shah: Pakistani girl, 8, killed after freeing expensive parrots from cage". The National (Abu Dhabi). 3 June 2020. Retrieved June 11, 2020.
  5. Jamal, Sana (5 August 2020). "Islamabad: Child domestic labour banned following outrage over murder of eight-year-old Zohra Shah". Gulf News. Retrieved 25 November 2020.
  6. "'We need justice': Zohra Shah's family breaks silence over murder of girl, 8". The National (Abu Dhabi). 9 June 2020. Retrieved June 11, 2020.