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Time is changing and so are the trends. People, by now are realizing the ‘ill- effects’ of extravagance and thus, a wave of ‘simple marriages’ is revolutionizing the society. Simple marriages are those marriages which are done in an austere way, without any pomp and show and according to Islamic Shariah. In simple marriages, people are directed not to spend money lavishly and tie the knot with simplicity, so that marriages don’t become a burden.

Talking to some couples who have performed their marriages in an austere way and through Islamic Shariah, this scribe tried to know the reason of their motivation to tie the nuptial in a simple way.

Nazir Ahmed, a business man by profession and hailing from Chattabal was married to Neelam Afroza a year back. Unaware of the fact that he’ll marry as per Islamic Shariah, Nazir was inspired by an Ijtimah organized by Islamic Dawah Centre (IDC).

“I was motivated by the speeches delivered in the Ijtimah organized by Islamic Dawah Centre and nurtured my will power to marry according to Islamic guidelines,” Nazir told the reporter, adding, “my wife was not of the same view, but later I managed to change her mindset. Now, Mashallah we are living happily.”

Being first marriage of this kind (simple) in their family, Nazir said that he had to face a lot from his relatives and friends. “It was an arduous job to make them understand the noble outcome of simple marriages. They used to taunt and harass me, but I stood on my conviction and Alhamdullilah, they have now accepted us,” visibly happy Nazir said.

Nazir believes that simple marriage has a lot of Barkat in it and it also saves money to be wasted in profligacy. “Simple marriages are indeed very beneficial. It is not only that Allah is willing, but you’ve a satisfaction at heart that you have made Allah- the Almighty happy, which will pay you in the long run. Also, lot of money is saved which otherwise in local ‘A grade marriages’ is at apex,” reveals he.

Thanking Fayaz Ahmed Zaroo for his timely counseling, Nazir said that he has played a great role in convincing him and all others to shun these so-called ‘modern customs’ and come closer to Islam.

“He is really a great man and through his counseling at IDC, we changed our mindset. Society truly needs such people to curb the menace of ‘prolific marriages’, that has left doors open for vulgarity,” believes Nazir.

Jalal-u-din Bach, an inhabitant of Karan Nagar and another couple, who was married through Humsafar Marriage Counseling Cell (HMCC) to Nighat Parveen, said that initially he had to face the thwart from his family.

“My own parents were against the will when I told them about my inspiration from IDC. But I resisted and those who used to annoy me, maintained silence after my marriage,” recalls Jalal, adding, “People now come forward and talk about such things. In fact, all my friends married simply after my marriage, thus carving a niche for themselves.”

Jalal is of the opinion that simple marriages mitigate parents and is indeed a treasure. “Simple marriages relieve parents, as lot of money, time and labour is saved. And marriages through HMCC as per Islamic guidelines are a ‘shifa’ for those who are decepted by the dubious world,” opines Jalal.

Lateef Ahmed, one more couple, who is also a member of IDC and HMCC, was married to Rubaya. A govt. employee, Lateef married as per Islamic protocol, but not through HMCC.

“When I informed my parents to arrange my marriage as per Islamic rules, they no doubt tried tooth and nail to stop me from walking down the aisle this way, but being affiliated with IDC, and having Islamic mindset, I was able to motivate them,” divulges Lateef. “No doubt they selected the bride for me, but the nuptial was accomplished as per my wish,” he adds.

For Shameem Ahmed of Safakadal, marrying in an austere way was not a problem as his parents were ebullient to hear that Shameem wants to get hitched in a simple way. A Pashmeena worker, Shameem was wedded to Fatima Hassan few months back through HMCC. Having an Islamic background, Shameen was quite sure of his humdrum marriage.

“There were no hurdles for me. In fact my parents themselves wanted me to marry in an ascetic way, HMCC just provided a platform,” asserts Shameem. His wife Fatima is also of the same view point.

“I hadn’t seen him before marriage. My parents chose the guy for me and I accepted the proposal. Alhamdullilah, I’ve found a great husband in Shameem,” Burqa- clad Fatima said.

The trend of late marriages is at pinnacle. Many guys and gals in marriageable ages find no body to tie the knot with. More than 20,000 girls have arrived at the marriageable age, but due to one or the other reason they are still in homes.

The money to be used for marriages compells parents to go for loans, etc; thus they remain in debt from head to toe. Most often, it is seen that girl parents are much worried about all such things. That is why the birth of girl is a glum in our society, because the marriage is not affordable. Boys, for not finding any govt. job are wandering from one door to the other, but all in vain. All this has reduced our social fabric to rubbles!

The wave of ‘simple marriages’ has ameliorated the society in a great way. More and more people are coming forward, wiping off the social stigmas and thus creating an example for all others to follow.

“We at HMCC want people to shun extravagance that has plunged our society in the darkness of waywardness. Marriage is a blessing from Allah and by ‘outraging its chastity’ we are getting closer to doom,” warns Fayaz Ahmed Zaroo, coordinator of IDC and HMCC. “It is really pleasing to see people cooperating with us and allowing themselves to curb the menace of lavish marriages,” adds he. As per his information 1500 cases have been registered in HMCC till now.

Many people have a notion in their minds that only low and middle class families go for simple marriages. But it is seen that elite or ‘high class families’ also come to the fore to get hitched up in a simple way.

“I’m an owner of 19 shops in Lal-Chowk and thus, have a sound economic milieu. As such I also belong to ‘high class society’,” announces Nazir, adding, “A man is not rich by his money, but by his character and his ethics.”

According to Nazir Ahmed, 90% of the youth blame parents for extravagance.

“There is a proverb in Kashmiri- ‘Chunt chu chuntis wichit rang rattan’. So truly it applies to our ‘modern society’. People just want to blow their own horn. The fear of Allah has been lost, that has compelled people to indulge into immoral activities and left gates open for every nuisance,” laments Nazir.

To make people aware of the benefits of ‘simple and austere marriages’, Radio Kashmir in collaboration with IDC has started a programme ‘AALAV’. It is broadcasted at 8.30 am on Tuesdays. Fayaz Ahmed Zaroo, through his benign counseling and immense Islamic knowledge, talks to people and clears their dilemmas and making them aware of the advantages of simple marriages.

An eminent citizen and a leading doctor of the valley, Dr Umer Niyazi in his letter to a local daily Greater Kashmir announced that he was inspired by AALAV programme of Radio Kashmir about simple marriages.

“My name was registered with HMCC run by IDC, by my parents. HMCC provided a suitable match within one month against Rs. 200, as stationery charges. My marriage was arranged according to the prescribed Islamic guidelines, which was very simple, very easy and the most economical,” proclaims Dr Niyazi. “I would like to thank the esteemed Islamic scholar, Jenab Fayaz Ahmed Zaroo Sahib for persuading us through his soft counseling on Radio Kashmir. Also, I thank respected producer of AALAV, Mr. Saleem Ijaz Sahib for devising such a reform-oriented programme,” he further adds.

Farooq Ahmed, a laboratory technologist is going to tie the knot after few months, through HMCC. He is one among those who are inspired by AALAV programme of Radio Kashmir.

“My parents were moved by the counseling of Fayaz Sahib on Radio Kashmir. Earlier my sisters got wedded amidst hype and hoopla, but this is the first ‘simple marriage’ in our house,” Farooq said, adding “It is indeed a gutsy step and we all need to appreciate the move!”

Just 28 years old, Farooq deems that youth can play a great role in making the social order free from impropriety by opting for simple marriages.

“Youth have a large potential and being builders of nation, they can make a difference at their individual levels,” he says.

“People at times get surprised as well as puzzled when they come to know that they just have to pay Rs. 10 for form and Rs. 200 for registration,” divulges Lateef, a member of HMCC. “It is relieving for parents when only 8 people are acceptable with Baraat and even much easy for them when wazwaan etc is not being prepared and the guests are served with Kehwa. Thus the girl parents need not to be in low ebb; a revolution has come. All what is needed is the support from commoners,” feels Lateef.

Fayaz Ahmed Zaroo has this to put forward to the general public.

“Our society has lost its ethnicity and we need to fill the loss. Moral values and morality have become the things of past. ‘Simple marriage’ is just a step towards positive exuberance. We need to encourage the effort and people need to come forward and cooperate. Inshallah, I’m sure we’ll succeed in our mission to make society free from malice,” he feels.

Making a difference…

Humsafar Marriage Counseling Cell (HMCC) was formed in 2005 with a view to control extravagance in marriages. Working on the principles of Islam, HMCC has done a remarkable job after its investiture in the valley.

“The main aim of HMCC is to make people aware of Islamic rules and regulations, and restrain them from indulging into debauched activities,” says Fayaz Ahmed Zaroo, in charge HMCC.

Like any other marriage bureau of the valley which provides facilities like catering and demands matrimony fees, besides registration fee, HMCC in its best service demands only registration fee as Rs. 200/= only.

“We want to make marriages as simple as possible and by demanding bucks, we don’t want to make marriages a burden for people,” feels Fayaz Zaroo. He believes that by performing simple marriage, as prescribed in Islamic Shariah, Allah gets pleased and will reward in the hereafter. He attributes the cause of late marriages to lavish and prolific marriages, which has a deep impact on our society and most importantly, which is forbidden in Islam.

“Allah dislikes those who trouble his creation and by making marriages improvident, we are troubling his creation and in turn disappointing Allah- the Almighty,” bemoans Fayaz Zaroo.

According to him, even ‘Zul’ (twinkling light, used to decorate house in marriages) is not permissible, as it may tempt the one who may not be in a position to afford such things.

“If a poor unmarried girl in a locality (where the wedding is taking place), happens to see ‘Zul’, in heart-to-heart she will get tempted and will wish for the same, but her father may not be in a condition to fulfill her needs. And even, not in a position to arrange her nuptial. The tear in her eyes, if falls on the ground and if Allah feels it, the very marriage going on, will be demolished,” warns Zaroo, adding “So, it is better to avoid such things!”

People by now are realizing the fact that simple marriages pave way for happiness and prosperity. People to a greater extent are coming forward.

“Infact the Meher (the money given to the bride by the groom at the time of marriage) now preferred by people is Meher-e- Fatimi (the Meher which was arranged at the time of Hazrat Fatima’s (RA) marriage). It comprises of 132 tola of silver, which is neither a big amount nor a less one,” Fayaz Zaroo said.

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