"It will be
therefore be a gross mistake to interpret the verses 23:5/6, 70:29/30 in a
gendered manner to sanction unlimited sexual freedom to men-folk with female
captives, slaves and their like. Moreover, the Qur’an fully clarifies itself
with the progress of the revelation. Thus, as Muhammad Asad observes, quoting
al-Razi and al-Tabari, the Qur’an prohibits sexual relation with any woman
other than one’ lawful wife . Hence,
any notion of slavery and sexual slavery are antithetic to the Qur’anic
One can easily say that it is a propaganda of the communal and fascist forces to dub Muslims as believers in polygamy, but this does not free Muslims from their duty to introspect. Though it is a common perception among Muslims as well that ‘Islam allows up to four marriages’. Yes due to economic constraints, at least in India, not many Muslims can think of going for a second marriage.
As far as strict conditions for second marriages laid down by Quran are concerned very few Ulema and Mufti’s are familiar with them and eve fewer include this in their discourses. But in the case of a neo rich class of Muslims, more than one Nikah is prevalent. Muftis and Qazis are playing in the hands of this class. I think it is these Ulema, Muftis and Qazis who have to be retrained. Only then common Muslims and others can be educated into learning that Quranic teachings call for monogamy as the social norm.
Muslims' practice of monogamy can be witnessed with just a cursory look in and around our locality, states or countries. You will, hardly, find a man having more than one wife at a time in India, Pakistan or Bangladesh, but in dire need and unavoidable circumstances. It is evident to some extent in Middle Eastern countries. But there are very few people who would agree with this opinion.