While majority long for gold ornaments or cash in their marriage, a bookworm bride has set a rare example taking 101 books from groom as mahr – an obligation, in the form of money or possessions paid by the groom, to the bride at the time of Islamic marriage.
The couple is Sumaiya Parveen Antara, an ex-student of Islamic History and Culture Department of Kushtia Islamic University of 2013-14 session and Ruhul Mithun, a former student of Dhaka University.
He is currently working in a government bank. They are residents of sadar upazila of Chuadanga district.
They got married on October 29, and the groom handed over 101 books to bride on the same day.
The couple expressed their desire to build a family library with the books, and the invited guests were surprised at the event.
Antara has an immense love for books. From that love, she chose 101 books instead of money, gold ornaments, jewelry as per her wish.
She said: “Everyone thinks that money and gold ornaments can only be mahr in marriage. But while studying in the university, I learned that there can be other things as well. That’s when I decided to ask for 101 books as mahr in marriage.”
“When I told my parents about my wish, they agreed and asked me to collect the book titles. Our marriage was arranged by our families. As per my wish, the books were handed over to me. I am very happy about it,” she added.
“A high rate of mahr is fixed in the society. But most of those mahrs remain unpaid. That’s why I took this decision in my student life,” Antara further said.
Ruhul Mithun said, in the discussion between the two families before the marriage, his father-in-law told him about his daughter’s wishes and gave a list of the 101 books.
“Though it was a bit hard to find all the books, I enjoyed it,” said Mithun.
“I also had a love for books since childhood, which is why I wanted a book lover as a life partner. He fulfilled it in the course of time,” he added.
Earlier in September, a couple- Nikhil Naushad and Shantana Khatun- became the talk of the town at Bogra’s Dhunat upazila after they decided upon 101 books as mahr for their marriage.