Marriage in Pakistan:
A Pakistani Marriage (Urdu: ???? , ???? , ???? ,???? ,??? ,??????) is culturally considered as the most standard and stable living form for adults. A marriage is seen not only as a link between man and a woman but it is also considered a union between their parents' families.
Arranged marriages have been an integral part of Pakistani society for years and it is traditional for people to have their marriages planned by their parents and other respected family-members. Arranged matches are made after taking into account factors such as the backgrounds of their families (wealth and social standing). A marriage can also be made within the extended family, such as between cousins.
Arranged marriages in Pakistan often take much time. From the preparation till the wedding day it may take more than a year. When the wedding date approaches, all close relatives are invited therefore a typical Pakistani wedding requires a considerable budget in order to accommodate them. In some cases, wedding dates are even postponed until the important relatives are able to arrive to the location of the reception from abroad. The wedding customs and celebrations also differ significantly depending on the geographical location as well as the families involved. However, a typical Pakistani wedding has at least three main customs involving the Henna ceremony (Rasme Henna), the vows or the Nikah which is a part of the actual wedding or Shaadi ceremony, and a subsequent Walima offered by the groom's family.
Arranged marriages are still prevalent in Pakistan. Marriages are often arranged within the family or within the same tribe or ethnicity. Social and educational status are very important in arranged matrimonial alliances. It should be noted, that an arranged marriage is not a 'forced' marriage, rather it is an alliance encouraged and arranged by the parents with consent of the couple to be wed. However, love marriages are slowly becoming more common and acceptable in Pakistan.
This is a reception made in the bride's house, where the groom's parents and family elders formally ask the bride's parents for her hand in marriage. In religious families once the wedding proposal is accepted the families read Surah Al-Fatihah, which is the first surah in the Quran, and then tea and refreshments are served. Depending on individual family tradition, the bride to be may also be presented with an item of jewelry and the guests (family elders) may present the groom with gifts of gold.