Muslim Clerics in Bihar insist on Pre-nuptial No Dowry Vows

Patna: Muslim clerics from Bihar, in a rare joint move, have asked would-be grooms to visit local mosques and make formal declarations that they would not accept dowry as a condition for performing their “Nikah” (wedding). The move, which has received huge praise from various quarters, sets a noteworthy example in a state that is notorious for dowry deaths. A decision to this effect was taken at a meeting of the Islahul Muslimeen Muslim Samaj, an organisation of Muslims, held in the Valmiki Nagar locality of West Champaran district. The meeting, attended by a large number of Muslim religious leaders, announced a social boycott of persons seeking dowry stating that Islam strictly prohibits the practice. “A groom will have to make a declaration in the mosque stating he has not sought for dowry nor he will accept dowry. No clergy would perform his ‘nikah’ if he fails to do that,” Mufti Mohammad Gyasudeen told the media. “This is not a warning or fatwa [diktat] but a declaration by the Muslim community,” he said.
A similar meeting was earlier held at Tarwan village in southern Bihar’s Gaya district at which Muslim representatives from 94 villages took part. “From today onward, no maulana [cleric] will be there to read out ‘nikahnama’ or administer ‘khabulnama’ under the circumstances,” said a unanimous resolution adopted at the meeting, adding that those seeking dowry would instantly face a social boycott.


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