What are the Miscellaneous Prohibitions of Marriage under Muslim Law in India?
(b) Rule of Equality (Al-kafat):
Besides the above-mentioned relative prohibitions, there is another prohibition which may be regarded as a restriction by society rather than by law. The society desires that for a happy married life the social status of the husband and wife must be equal.
This is termed as the rule of equality. If a marriage has been contracted in violation of this rule i.e. where the husband and wife are not of equal status, the marriage is perfectly valid but the Kazi or the court may invalidate the marriage.
Under the Shia law this prohibition is not recognised.
(c) Re-Marriage between Divorced Couple:
After dissolution of marriage, husband and wife are free to re-marry with other persons. But, there is prohibition in the re-marriage of the same persons who were husband and wife before divorce. If the same husband and wife want to marry again they have to fulfill a very strict condition.
The condition is that after her Iddat, the divorced wife should first contract a valid marriage with some other person. This marriage is consummated. Thereafter that other person divorces the wife voluntarily. After divorce, the wife observes Iddat. After completion of this Iddat, she is entitled to re-marry her former husband. However, if this condition has not been fulfilled, the re-marriage of the divorced couple is merely irregular (fasid); it is not void (batil)?
Under Muslim law, a man has legal right to marry with four women at a time. But, a Muslim woman has no such right. A Muslim woman is prohibited to contract second marriage during the continuance of the first marriage. If she contracts a second marriage during subsistence of the first, the second marriage is void both under Sunni law as well as under the Shia law.