Islam gave economical rights to the women 1,300 years before the West.
An adult Muslim woman can own, she can dispose or disown any of her property without consulting any one, irrespective whether she is married or she is single.
In 1870, it was the first time in England, that the West recognized the rights of the married woman, where she was allowed to own or dispose any of her property without consultation.
I do agree that the women were given their economical rights 1300 years ago - these are ancient rights - but the question is – ‘are they modernizing or outdated?’
Women on Job:
A women in Islam, if she wishes to work she can work - There is no text in the Qur’an or the authentic Hadith which prevents or makes it prohibited for a woman to do any work, as long as it is not unlawful, as long as it is within the preview of the Islamic Shariah, as long as she maintains her Islamic dress code.
But natural, she cannot take up jobs, which exhibit her beauty and body - Like for example, modeling and film acting, and such kind of jobs.
Many of the professions and jobs which are prohibited for the woman are also prohibited for the man, for example serving alcohol, working in gambling dens, doing any unethical or dishonest business. All these jobs are prohibited for both men and women.
A true Islamic society requires women to take up profession such as doctors.
We do require female Gynecologists, we do require female nurses, we do require female teachers.
But, a woman in Islam has got no financial obligations - The financial obligation is laid on the shoulders of the man in the family - Therefore she need not work for her livelihood.
But in genuine cases, where there are financial crisis in which both the ends do not meet, she has the option of working.
Here too, no one can force her to work - She works out of her own, absolute free will.
Financial Security for Women:
A woman in Islam has been given more financial security, as compared to the man.
As I told you earlier, the financial obligation is not put on her shoulder - It is put on the shoulder of the man in the family. It is the duty of the father or the brother, before she is married and the duty of the husband or the son, after she is married to look after her lodging, boarding, clothing and financial aspects of her.
Compulsory Marital Gift for a Woman:
When she gets married, she is on the receiving end.
She receives a gift - she receives a dower or a marital gift, which is called as ‘Meher’.
And it is mentioned in the Qur’an in Surah Nisa, Ch.4 Verse No.4 which says, ‘Give to the woman in dower, a marital gift’.
For a marriage to solemnize in Islam, ‘Meher’ is compulsory.
But unfortunately in our Muslim society here, we just keep a nominal ‘Meher’ to satisfy the Qur’an, say 151 Rupees, or some people give 786 Rupees and they spend lakhs and lakhs of Rupees on the reception, on the decoration, on the flowers, on the lunch parties, on the dinner parties.
In Islam, there is no lower-limit, nor is there an upper limit for ‘Meher’ - But when a person can spend lakhs of Rupees on the reception, surely the ‘Meher ’ should be much more.
There are various cultures which have crept into the Muslim societies, specially in the Indo-Pak area.
They give a small amount of ‘Meher’ and they expect the wife to give a fridge, to give a T.V set, they expect the wife to give an apartment, to give a car, etc., and a large sum of dowry, depending upon the status of the husband.
If he is a graduate, they may expect 1 lakh - If he is an engineer they may expect 3 lakhs - If he is a doctor they may expect 5 lakhs.
Demanding dowry from the wife, directly or indirectly is prohibited in Islam.
If the parents of the girl give the girl something out of their own free will, it is accepted - But demanding or forcing directly or indirectly, it is prohibited in Islam.
No Financial Liabilities:
If a Woman works, which she does not have to - whatever earning she gets, it is absolutely her property.
She need not spend on the household - if she wants to spend it is her free will.
Irrespective how rich the wife is, it is the duty of the husband to give lodging, boarding, clothing and look after the financial aspects of the wife.
In case of divorce or if a wife gets widowed, she is given financial support for the period of ‘Iddah’ - and if she has children, she is also given child support.
Right to Inherit:
Islam gave the right to the women to inherit, centuries ago.
If you read the Qur’an - in several verses, in Surah Nisa, in Surah Baqarah and in Surah Maidah, it is mentioned that a woman, irrespective she is a wife or she is a mother, or a sister, or a daughter, she has a right to inherit. And it has been fixed by God Almighty in the Qur’an.