Netizens worry over Dr Zakir Naik’s hefty requirements for son’s spouse

Islamic scholar seeks virtuous wife for son Fariq Zakir in two-page post on Facebook

Twitter users were amused and concerned after revered Islamic scholar and televangelist Dr Zakir Naik revealed he was on the lookout for a wife for his son, Fariq Zakir Naiq.

Journalist Tehreem Azeem posted a two-page letter that Naik put out, which detailed preferred credentials for his future daughter-in-law. Seminal in the letter was the requirement that the woman be a practicing Muslim who aspired to preach Islam. The letter also listed his son’s credential’s including his education and activities, complete with a description of his complexion and height as well. Azeem said that anyone who could assist Naik in his quest should retweet her post and send the credentials to interested people as well.

Some users were perturbed by the lengthy requirements and the need for a letter to begin with. Educationist Taimur Rahman said that the letter demonstrated the perils of a ‘deeply gender segregated society’. Rahman questioned whether it would be more conducive to society if youngsters were allowed to interact and choose their partners themselves.

One said that even job applications were less demanding than Naik’s requirements.

Another added that there were nine ‘necessary qualities’ and six ‘preferable’ ones, which showed that even Islamic inclinations could not get rid of the cultural stereotypes of the ‘Indian parent’.

Even female Islamic scholars did not have the qualities Naik was seeking, added another user.

Others had found their source of fun for the day in Naik’s post. One humorously opined that dating app profiles should be created for Fariq to succeed in his search.

A user jabbed that the situation felt like the Islamic version of the popular reality show, The Bachelor, in which people sought partners for themselves. He added that the show’s new ‘Mullah edition’ would be hosted by Naik and the program would be aired through tweets soon.

Several users were bothered by others who critiqued the CV-style letter. A user said that ‘liberals’ were irked by the post even though Naik sought a daughter-in-law who was dedicated to the faith. She pointed out that Naik did not demand good looks or excessive dowry from his daughter-in-law.

One said that it was a decent move to be vocal about expectations before marriage instead of after. He said that Naik’s method was an ‘honorable’ way to seek a daughter-in-law, which was something that marriage bureaus did as well.

Another added that the letter reflected ‘freedom of choice’ in that Fariq trusted his father to find him a suitable match.

Naik posted the letter on his Facebook account on Saturday and listed details of other family members like his own wife and daughter in it. He insisted that anyone who was interested should respond to the post with relevant details.