Frontline: Outlawed in Pakistan

Frontline: Outlawed in Pakistan

Tuesday, May 28 at 10:00 p.m.

When 13-year-old Kainat Soomro accused four men of gang rape, she risked everything: her reputation, her education and even her life.

In Pakistan, women and girls who allege rape are often more strongly condemned than their alleged rapists. Some are even killed by their own families. For this unforgettable documentary, filmmakers Habiba Nosheen and Hilke Schellmann spent years tracing one alleged rape victim's odyssey through Pakistan’s flawed justice system — as well as her alleged rapists’ quest to clear their names.

Through the lens of the protracted legal battle between Kainat and her alleged rapists, they explore cultural norms around female sexuality in Pakistan, the continued influence of the country’s tribal justice system and the troubling procedural flaws in the country’s formal court system.

We meet Kainat’s parents, who stand by their daughter as things take a deadly turn for the family. Her father vows to “fight until Kainat gets justice.”

We also meet the four men accused of Kainat’s rape—whose families also vow to fight back. “There will be murders over this. Don’t you read the newspapers?” one man’s uncle tells Nosheen and Schellmann. “These things lead to a chain of murders.”