Bismillahir Rahmaanir Raheem
If the proposal has taken place, make the so-called engagement, the Nikah, and whatever is to be given to the girl, make that the Mahr.
To delay in performing Nikah, which in itself takes only a few minutes, leads to many problems. A person called saying that his daughter who is engaged is already four months pregnant. The question asked: Will the child be regarded as legitimate or illegitimate?
If a child is born before six months of the marriage has passed, it is regarded as illegitimate.
Because of delay in performing the Nikah, a child will now be illegitimate.
One young Muslim girl studying at one of the universities called me and said that she is overcome by the guilt of her sins. She is proposed but her parents said that the Nikah can only be performed after she completes her studies and qualifies. They were not willing to have the Nikah performed before her graduation. She said, herself, that in two years, she had three abortions and now cannot live with the guilt.
These are realities which many parents do not want to consider because of their selfish reasons.
To delay Nikah so that the Nikah will be performed at a certain Ijtima, Jalsa, or that some Buzurg may perform the Nikah are also not valid reasons in delaying Nikah.
In a Hadeeth related by Hazrat ‘Ali (Radhiyallaahu ‘anhu), Rasulullah (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam) mentioned three matters wherein there should be no delay:
1.) Salaah when its time arrives,
2.) Offering the Janazah Salaah when the body is brought forth (after the completion of the washing) and
3.) Marriage of a woman whose match is found.
Hazrat Abdur Rahmaan Ibn Auf (Radhiyallaahu ‘anhu) married without even inviting Rasulullah (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam), who was present in Madina Munawwarah at the time. That was the simplicity and quickness of their Nikahs.
May Allah Ta’ala give us the understanding and the Taufeeq of setting noble examples, and discarding all the fanfare, with halls, with receptions and with décor – which is extravagance and wastage.
 Nikah : Marriage
 Mahr : Dowry