“And We have Created You in Pairs”
The Groom, Usama Ahmed Khan, and the Bride, Huma Majid Khan.
The following report was written by Zoya Imran, granddaughter of Engr. Iqbal Ahmed Khan of Karachi, Pakistan.
Usama Ahmed Khan, the nephew of Engr. Iqbal Ahmed Khan (Vice President-Saudi Aramco Ex-Employees Association-SAEEA) married Huma Majid on February 24th, 2023 in Karachi.
In Pakistani culture, a few pre-celebrations take place before the actual wedding ceremony. The first event was a small engagement ceremony held on October 9th, 2022 at the bride’s place when a few of the groom’s family members went to the bride’s house and offered their blessings to Huma then on October 16th, the bride’s family members came to the groom’s house and similarly, in a small gathering, offered their blessings to Usama and they were officially engaged.
Weddings are an insignia of culture. Every event is unique in its strategy, dress or food selection and other minute details. It’s a perfect time for families to gather together and spend time together enjoying the chaos enjoined with all the joy.
Since February of 2023 began, the excitement was in full swing as guests were arriving soon and the wedding was nearing day by day. On February 16th, Usama’s cousin and the niece of Engr. Iqbal Ahmed Khan, Jennifer Aijaz Khan arrived in Pakistan from the U.S., along with her husband and children to attend the wedding. Everyone was extremely enlivened now and the house seemed to light up with their arrival. Two days later, Usama’s maternal uncle, Khalid, and her daughter arrived from India. On the 19th, Usama’s cousins and Jennifer’s sisters, Saira and Anum Khan arrived from the U.S as well. Now, the house was abuzz with exhilaration.
On the evening of the 19th, the groom’s side went to the bride’s house for a rasam. The Bari, a group of presents for the bride, were taken and everyone enjoyed a delicious dinner after the rasam of feeding mithai to the bride. The next day, the bride’s family came to the bridegroom’s house for Usama’s rasam and gifts, and a small dholki was held which enhanced the festivity with the singing of classic wedding folk songs and the sound of the dholak. There was also a rasam called “Bhaat,” in which the groom’s relations from his maternal side uncle, etc., Khalid Khan (uncle), gives out gifts and also drapes a dupatta on his sister.
At the last minute, two of Usama’s cousins from UAE, Lubna and Faisal, also arrived to attend the wedding!
A family photo with the bride and groom including local guests and guests from India, UAE and the USA.
The day before the wedding was chaos all around. With so many women in the house, everyone was eager to get their mehndi (Henna) done and the upheaval made the whole day more fun! The mehndi lagai was full of fun songs and cheerfulness, and many laughs were shared together!
Finally, the big day arrived! The 24th of February was the Nikaah Ceremony. In Islam, the main event and most formal ritual is the Nikaah in which the bride and groom are formally declared and documented as husband and wife. Usama’s Nikaah was performed in a Mosque (Masjid) while Huma’s Nikaah was performed at her home in the afternoon.
In the evening, the reception, “Baraat,” was held at Regale Banquet. The bride and groom looked stunning! Everyone was dressed up, full of glee and merriment. After multiple photography sessions and a scrumptious dinner, the event came to an end with the rukhsati - the bride has to leave her family and join a new family. The car was decorated with beautiful flowers as a sign of welcoming a new family member to the family. Gifts were exchanged and after more pictures, the wedding ceremony came to an end, Alhamdulillah.
The 26th of February was the “Valima,” which is a concluding event, a dinner hosted by the groom’s family. This was held at the Akacia Banquet. As it was in the afternoon, preparations had begun early in the morning. This too was a time of rejoicing and bliss. The event went amazing, with intriguing music playing throughout. With the Valima Reception, the wedding festivities came to an end.
This wedding will surely be remembered most for all the memories made and all the fun everyone had together! At last, I want to congratulate my Mamu and Mami. May you both live a long, healthy and happy life together, Aameen.
Saudi Aramco Ex-Employees Association (SAEEA) wishes Usama and Huma a very healthy and prosperous married life, Ameen.