A double murder in West Auckland has stunned the community with a number of questions asked about domestic violence and its growing menace in New Zealand.
Farhat Rana Malik, who was in her late fifties and her young daughter Sidra Noor Mailk were found murdered in their home in Pooks Road property in Ranui on May 19.
Ishrat Mailk (55), stated to be the husband of Farhat, has been remanded in custody by the Waitakere District Court on charges relating to the death of the two women.
The man, stated to be in a distressed state, is currently being assessed in the Special Needs Unit of Mt Eden prison and is being monitored every 15 minutes. Classified as ‘Maximum Status,’ the defendant is fed and showered separately.
Syed Mujeeb Hyderabadi, a West Auckland resident and a family friend of Farhat, confirmed the names of the victims, saying that the incident was horrible and avoidable.
“Farhat and Sidra were well known among the members of the Urdu-speaking communities from India and their native Pakistan. She was a very fond of Urdu Language and poetry and was due to participate in the ‘Sham E Ghazal Kavi Sammelan Mushaira’ held at the Fickling Convention Centre in Three Kings, Auckland on May 24. It is difficult to reconcile to such a tragedy,” he said.
Ghouse Majeed, who hosted the Mushaira programme, said that Farhat was an enthusiastic community worker and that she was always ready to help people.
“She was connected with the Ranui Action Project and was an active participant in community and literary events. She was also an active member of the Waitakere Ethnic Board and the Pakistan Association of New Zealand (PANZ). We really missed her ‘Shayari’ at the Mushaira,” he said.
Reverend Amail Habib said that despite countering a series of domestic issues, Farhat was involved with diverse ethnic and cultural groups to promote goodwill and friendship.
“There was always a sparkle in her eyes. She took up the cause of domestic violence seriously,” he said.
PANZ President Athar Awan said that Farhat was a ‘wonderful person’ and a great asset to the Pakistan community in New Zealand.
“She was liked by everyone who knew her. We will certainly miss her,” he said.
Farhat and Sidra were buried at the Manukau Memorial Gardens on Friday, May 23 following a funeral service held at Majid Al Mustafa in Mangere. More than 500 people attended the funeral prayers including former Labour MP Dr Ashraf Choudhary.
The Roopa Aur Aap Charitable Trust held a condolence meeting at its Mt Roskill premises (13 May Road) on Tuesday, May 27 attended by a number of people from the Indian and Pakistani communities.
Photo : Farhat Rana Malik