Thursday, 21 July 2011
Muslim Men Urged to Find Women Within Their ‘Own Community’
Muslim matrimonial services, such as AsianD8online.com and MuslimAndSingle.com are on the rise as British female Muslims find themselves increasingly in search of a husband. The National Statistics report that in 2009 over 12,000 Muslim women were brought into the UK by British Muslim men, as they appear to satisfy their parents wishes for a more 'homely' daughter in law. Sonia Hashmi and Vikram Kakaria explain why their services are on the up, and how they are successfully helping British Muslim females in their search to find love and happiness.
In Feburary 2011, a newscast by the BBC reported that British Muslim men brought almost 12,000 Muslim women into the UK from Pakistan, India or Middle Eastern countries (National Statistics, 2009). This lofty figure suggests that Muslim males are returning ‘home’ in search of a partner as opposed to finding themselves a spouse from the UK. BBC news reporter Robert Piggot, observed one of the AsianD8online.com Muslim speed dating events, and was highly impressed by what he saw. He described the attendees as ‘westernised and attractive’, and also mentioned that the atmosphere was ‘relaxed and friendly’. Interestingly, he goes onto explain that although the room was full of ‘westernised men and women’ that the attendees parents’ presence was still felt. “Older generations of Muslim parents influence their sons in particular to marry a more homely girl with traditional values”. It is believed that parents would prefer that their daughter in laws to be focussed on bringing up children, opposed to pursuing a career. The parents are also often in the mindset that their ‘model daughter in-law’ would be better off sourced from ‘back home’.
In the wake of this, however, there seems to be a high demand for Muslim Singles websites, which is apparent by performing a quick Google search online. The term ‘Muslim dating’ or ‘Muslim singles’ returns over 24 million results per search, with companies such as AsianD8online.com and MuslimAndSingle.com featuring regularly.
“Our vision when creating this site was to consider what British Muslims felt that they were missing from other Muslim singles sites” says Sonia Hashmi, Business Development leader, MuslimAndSingle.com. She further explained that it was the fact that people couldn’t meet ‘like minded Muslims’ that easily on other Muslim dating websites that drove the creation of the site. “When designing the site, we looked at all of the other solutions on the market and realised that one thing stood out; none of the websites were focussed solely on dating for British Muslims. Their databases seemed to be diluted with people from all over the world”. Additionally, Sonia explained that their service wasn’t solely restricted to the online Muslims, as they have now arranged a series of Muslim singles events to allow for those people who would like to meet offline. “The term 'Muslim dating' is something that we endeavour to stray away from, because being Muslim ourselves we understand that ‘dating’ can be a sensitive issue. That’s why we focus on what we call Matchmaking events, with a series of ‘mini introductions’ (similar to speed dating). The idea behind our philosophy is to allow single Muslims a place where they can meet and interact with other Single British Muslims so hopefully and Inshallah (god willing), they can start their journey towards love and marriage”.
Imaam Ajmal Masroor of London recently echoed Sonia’s sentiments about allowing British Single Muslims to congregate and interact by stating that UK Muslim men should focus on creating relationships within Britain when searching for a potential wife ‘Muslim men have been slower to adapt to the western culture of allowing women to be career focussed. They have been found to ‘go back home’ to find a submissive partner, but that is not the solution, they should look within their own community’.
Vikram Kakaria, Marketing Director at AsianD8online agreed, saying that it appears that in the UK Westernised Muslim women are outnumbering the number of UK Muslim men within the British Asian dating market. “It appears that Single Muslim females within the UK are being overlooked by the males because they might want to pursue a career opposed to being more family focussed.” He also added that the dominance of parents within the British Muslim community appears more evident than of those within the Hindu and Sikh community. “Although we have seen a significant rise in Muslim Singles registering on Asiand8online or coming to the a Muslim speed dating London, we’ve noticed that a lot of them consider a loving marriage as a priority, whereas the Sikh and Hindu communities will be happy to date for a period of time”.
Both MuslimAndSingle.com and AsianD8online.com offer a variety of services for the single Muslim community, by means of dating or matchmaking events, and also a service for Muslim singles online.