Women have remained victim of male dominating societies throughout the history. When a woman got married to a man, she was considered as the possession of that man and the man could treat her the way he wanted. Even the father of that woman got some profit from that man to whom he gave her daughter. It is also mentioned in one of the narrations of the Quran. The Prophet Moses (P.B.U.H) worked for ten years to get married and all of the money was given to her father-in-law. So, all the profit from his work was given to the father of the woman. That miserable creature had no right to that profit and even had no right to get separation if she did not like him. The discrimination did not stop here, also that woman was considered as the property of the sons, brothers and relatives of her husband after his death. She had no right of objection. Also, the woman had no right to the property of her father and husband. In short, marriage was based just on the pleasure seeking wishes of the man and on the profit of the women’s father.
Muslim nikah nama
The Arabs had different methods of marriages. The most common were:
1. Marriage by the mutual agreement of the partners which was accepted by the Holy Prophet (S.A.W)
2. Marriages after the war in which the women were made wives without their consents or were sold as slaves
3. Polygamy and polyandry was permissible
These methods come up with many problems. The rights of women were not secured. Marriage was just for the pleasure or for the reproduction purpose. There was also the problem of the inheritance as in some cases most of the women who had married to more than one man, had the authority to attach their child to any of the man that he/she belonged to him.
Islamic nikah nama
All of these methods of this ignorant time were rejected by the Holy Prophet (S.A.W). Only one method was made permissible that is by the mutual agreement of man and woman. Islam gave the rights of women for the first time in the history. Marriage is considered as a social contract which is based on the equality of the rights and obligations of the both partners. Women are secured by the “Nikah” by reason of its terms and conditions. Some of the primary rights of women as the essential feature of the nikah are:
- The willingness of the women is very necessary and without their consent, it is not considered as permissible marriage according to Islam.
- The benefit of the marriage in term of “Haq meher” is just belonged to the woman and not given to her father as fashioned in earlier times.
- These rights are given in the presence of two witnesses without which the nikah could not be reputable
Besides this, if a woman doesn’t want to live with or like her husband, she can get a divorce from him and have the right of “Khula”. Even one of the women was permitted to take “Khula” from his husband by the Holy Prophet (S.A.W) just for the reason that she did not liked her husband. She also has the right of marriage after divorce or after the death of her husband. The polygamy was made permissible, but a man could have four wives at a time but only in the condition if he could maintain righteousness between all of them. Otherwise it is a sin.
In the time of the Holy Prophet S.A.W. nikah was administered just by the nikah khawan and in the presence of witnesses, the amount of haq mehr was made. There was no written documentation of this solemn contract. While before Islam, there was no proof of the written documentation of the marriage contract in the holy religions. There had some been some proof of written contract marriages before Islam in Zoroastrianism religion in Bactrian nation in the region of Afghanistan.
The proper documentation of nikah is now in the Pakistan in the form of “nikah nama” just to have a proof of that contract, so that there is no injustice with the partners. So, nikah nama is a written formal form of that marriage contract according to Pakistan Muslim family law. It consists of the rights and obligations of nikah which are derived from the Quran, Shariah, Ijtehad, Qiyas and Ijma by the different Muslim scholars. Quran also gives us teachings that we should write our important contracts so that there could have no doubt in those matters. Allah says in the holy Quran in Surah Al-baqra that:
“And be not loath to write down every contractual provision, be it small or great, together with the time at which it falls due; this is more equitable in the sight of God, more reliable as evidence, and more likely to prevent you from having doubts (later).”
So nikah nama is formed completely in the light of Islamic teachings. It is also fashioned and accepted now in India and in many other Islamic countries and also in Europe. The Christians of Pakistan are also obliged to have written documentation of their marriages according to Pakistani Law. The secret nikah nama is sanctioned under this law. Polygamy is only allowed by the permission of the first wife or by the consideration of its need by the Union Counselors of the specific areas. So the purpose of the nikah nama is just to protect the rights of partners but now a days, the women are being deceived by their family members by not giving them the full rights of that written contract. There should be some proper management to control it so that the rights and obligations could be fulfilled completely in the light of Quranic teachings.