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Can the Groom Be a Witness Himself for His Own Nikah?

Answered as per Hanafi Fiqh by DarulIftaBirmingham

Answered by: Maulana Yūsuf Badāt


Please accept my sincere apologies. I was trying to find out about the validity of nikah from an organisation in Pakistan called Darul Irfan because the groom follows that silsilah who believe groom himself can be a witness to his nikah. I was at a medical appointment and did not have my glasses on and assumed your email was a reply from them. The Sheikh of that silsilah stated in a video that any man can point and say to his friend I am married to that woman, if he sees her walking in the street and if the woman does not respond then she is in nikah with him. In the video, he states that the groom himself can be one of the witnesses to the nikah and the friend would be the second witness. The Sheikh states this in a video.

I have emailed Darul Irfan Pakistan the email I sent you about the validity of nikah and their response was one line stating the video is correct. This one line did not really tell me much apart from the fact that they agree with their sheikh, that a groom can be the second witness to nikah. I wrote a lengthy email asking them for an answer according to Quran, Sunna, hadiths etc. They have given me no Shariah or Quranic basis as to why they believe a nikah to be valid without two witnesses and how the groom can be a witness. They are the only organization that says this is ok for the groom to be a witness. All other scholars say you need two separate witnesses for nikah to be valid especially if it is secret and never announced.

In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful


In Islam, there is no such thing as a secret nikā (marriage). Islam instructs to publicise marriages. Consent is also required from both the groom and bride in order for a nikā to be valid. Regarding your question about the groom being a witness himself for his own nikā, this is not permissible according to Islamic law. A person himself [herself] can never be deemed an acceptable witness to their own transaction, according to Islamic jurisprudence.”– (See: Rad-Al-Muḥtār, Vol 4, Page 681 and 922, Dār Al-Ālam Al-Kutub, Al-Ikhtiyār, Vol 3, Page 83, Dār Al-Ālam Al-Kutub3)

The Prophet (peace and blessings upon him) said, “There is no nikā without a walī and two [separate] upright witnesses.” – (Ṣaḥīḥ Ibn Ḥibbān 4075) 4

The Prophet (peace and blessings upon him) said, “Publicize the marriage, hold it in the Masjids, and beat the duff for it [to be announced publicly].” – (Tirmidhī 1089)5

Only Allāh knows best

Written by Maulana Yūsuf Badāt

Checked and approved by Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah

Darul Ifta Birmingham

1 وَيَنْعَقِدُ أَيْ النِّكَاحُ أَيْ يَثْبُتُ وَيَحْصُلُ انْعِقَادُهُ بِالْإِيجَابِ وَالْقَبُولِ – رد المحتا ج ٤/ ص ٦٨ دار العالم الكتب

2 وَلَا يَنْعَقِدُ نِكَاحُ الْمُسْلِمَيْنِ إلَّا بِحُضُورِ شَاهِدَيْنِ – رد المحتار ج ٤/ ص ٩٢ دار العالم الكتب

3 وَلَا يَنْعَقِدُ نِكَاحُ الْمُسْلِمِينَ إِلَّا بِحُضُورِ رَجُلَيْنِ أَوْ رَجُلٍ وَامْرَأَتَيْنِ وَلَا بُدَّ فِي الشُّهُودِ مِنْ صِفَةِ الْحُرِّيَّةِ وَالْإِسْلَامِ وَلَا تُشْتَرَطُ الْعَدَالَةُ فَالشُّهُودُ شَرْطٌ لِقَوْلِهِ عَلَيْهِ الصَّلَاةُ وَالسَّلَامُ لَا نِكَاحَ إِلَّا بِشُهُودٍ وَرَوَى ابْنُ عَبَّاسٍ عَنِ النَّبِيِّ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ أَنَّهُ قَالَ الزَّانِيَةُ الَّتِي تُنْكِحُ نَفْسَهَا بِغَيْرِ بَيِّنَةٍ – كتاب الاختيار لتعليل المختار ج٣/ص٨٣ دار الكتب العلمية

4 عَنْ عَائِشَةَ أَنَّ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ قَالَ لَا نِكَاحَ إِلَّا بِوَلِيٍّ وَشَاهِدَيْ عَدْلٍ وَمَا كَانَ مِنْ نِكَاحٍ عَلَى غَيْرِ ذَلِكَ فَهُوَ بَاطِلٌ فَإِنْ تَشَاجَرُوا فَالسُّلْطَانُ وَلِيُّ مَنْ لَا وَلِيَّ لَهُ – صحيح ابن حبان ٤٠٧٥

5 أَعْلِنُوا هَذَا النِّكَاحَ وَاجْعَلُوهُ فِي الْمَسَاجِدِ وَاضْرِبُوا عَلَيْهِ بِالدُّفُوفِ – رواه الترمذي ١٠٨٩

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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