In a first of its kind, fifteen transgender couples transcending all social barriers tied the knot at a mass wedding function in Chhatisgarh’s Raipur on Saturday.
It looked like any other marriage which was conducted in traditional Hindu ceremonial style with pre-wedding rituals.
This was the first such event for the community in the country which was conceived by Raipur-based transgender and social activist Vidya Rajput and her team.
One such couple, Saloni and Gulam Nabi Ansari, who fell in love eight years ago got married on Saturday. The couple faced a lot of flak from their family and society.
“Initially, we decided to keep our relationship a secret. When we told about it to our families, they did not accept it, which is a common problem for transgenders,” the couple said.
Both Saloni and Ansari hail from Nagpur district in Maharashtra.
Sharing her experience in fighting the societal norms, Saloni said that they tried to convince their families by visiting them during festivals and other occasions.
“We kept visiting our families during festivals and other occasions and eventually persuaded them to accept our relationship. It was very difficult to make them understand our relationship,” said Saloni.
“Like others, a transgender also wants love and support and has the right to live a married life. We tried to get married earlier, but could not. When we heard about this event, we immediately contacted the organizers,” she said.
According to the 2014 Supreme Court judgement, transgenders are now recognized as “third gender” and enjoy constitutional rights and freedom.