Two Muslim mothers in India were arrested and accused of killing their daughters for dishonoring their families for running off with Hindu men, authorities said.
Newlyweds Zahida, 19, and Husna, 26, who were neighbors, were strangled on Wednesday night when they returned home after marrying men their mothers didn't approve of, cops said.
The mothers allegedly helped each other choke their daughters.
"We killed them because they brought shame to our community," Khatun, one of the mothers who uses one name, told the Indian Express newspaper after her arrest on Friday.
"How could they elope with Hindus? They deserved to die. We have no remorse," she said.
A third woman who allegedly helped the mothers was on the run, the Express reported.
There has been a spike in so-called "honor killings" across India as young men and women have sought to buck the country's tradition of arranged marriages and elope with partners outside their social class or religion.
Marriages between Hindus and Muslims are traditionally prohibited by both communities, though they have become more common in some urban areas in recent years.
Zahida and Husna, who, like Khatun, use only one name, lived in Uttar Pradesh, a state in northern India that borders Nepal.
They ran away and married a pair of Hindu laborers earlier this month, cops said. They returned on Tuesday and sought protection with local officials, but they were sent home to make peace with their mothers, the Express said.
The officials even had the mothers sign a bond promising not to hurt their daughters. But the mothers allegedly defied the pledge.
"When I woke up yesterday, I found my mother sitting beside my sister's body," Saira, Zahida's older sister, said. "She said she had killed her. I ran to the police station and informed them. Soon we got to know Husna had also been killed."
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