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Repeating the Nikah if First One Was Done Secretly?

Answered as per Hanafi Fiqh by DarulIftaBirmingham

Answered by: Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah


I and her got engaged one year back. We were living in the same city. I live with my colleagues and she lives with her mother. In the meantime, I used to go to her house to meet her and her mother. Then suddenly, I got a transfer to a different city. So before leaving, to avoid the rumors and to save the girl from bad hearings, I had a nikah with her in front of me and her parents and left (Nobody knows that except our parents and her hometown relatives) and rukhsati did not happen.  Now, we are planning for marriage, rukhsati, and receptions in the next two months in my hometown and we don’t want to tell my relatives about the previous nikah to save my parent’s dignity. So please tell me, can I do nikah once again with her in front of my relatives. Also please give some Quran and Hadith examples about the same.

In the name of Allah, the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful.


Firstly it should be borne in mind that to conduct the marriage in secret is against the Sunnah of our beloved Prophet of Allah Sallallahu Alahi Wasalam.

Saaidah Aaisha Radiallahu Anha narrates the Prophet of Allah Sallallahu Alahi wasalam has said, “Publicize the marriage. Do it in a mosque and play the duff.”   (Mishkaatul Masaabeeh p.272)

To publicize a marriage means that it should be performed in public among relatives and friends. And a noble way of declaring the marriage is to do it in the mosque after the Jumma prayer where everyone can witness it.  (Mazaahirul Haqq p.49 v.4)

For marriage to be valid the condition is that there should be at least two male witnesses or one male and two female witnesses who are required to listen to the words of the proposal (Ijab) and acceptance (qabul) clearly. (Hidayah p.306 v.2)

With regards to your question as long as the first nikah was done in the presence of two male witnesses or one male and two female witnesses who heard the words of the proposal (Ijab) and acceptance (qabul) clearly, the nikah will be done. The second nikah which is going to be done will be considered as repeating the process again. There is nothing wrong in doing that according to the Sharia, but will be preferable to avoid.

However, if only parents were present as witnesses besides the boy and girl, then such a nikah will not be valid according to the Shariah. Therefore, the second nikah you will be doing will be the correct one which will be recognized by the Shariah as the one which is making your wife lawful and halal for you.

Only Allah Knows Best

Written by Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah

Darul Ifta Birmingham

This answer was collected from DarulIftaBirmingham.co.uk, which is run under the supervision of Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah from the United Kingdom.

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