Indian transgender wedding makes history

A transgender couple has tied the knot in a groundbreaking wedding.

Surya and Ishaan K Shaan became the first trans pair to ever marry in Kerala, a state in India with more than 34 million people.

The trailblazers got married in front of more than 500 people in a beautiful ceremony at Mannam Hall in Thiruvananthapuram, after a change in Indian law allowed for trans people to marry.


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“We are now officially a couple – husband and wife and we will show the world that we can love and live a marriage too,” said Surya, a TV actor and trans activist, according to NDTV.

The pair met late last year at an event, started dating, then quickly decided to marry.


Ishan, who sits on the Transgender Justice Board, said: “We had known of one another for years, but weren’t friends,” The News Minute has reported.

“Six months ago, we met at a programme in Kozhikode and got to know each other. I proposed to her, knowing that she had the same feelings for me.”

Ishan said the journey to the happy day was painful.

“I never wanted to hurt my parents,” he said. “And that’s why my journey from Sabina to Irfaan has been long and tough.


“I wanted it with the support and blessings of my parents. Especially my mother.

“And the fact that my father, mother and sister are present for my wedding, makes me very happy,” he added.

Ishan’s mother Shanipa said: “We are the mother and father, so we of course will support our son.

“She was born a daughter, but now is our son. But that’s not how our relatives see this.

“It does get very tough. We also expect to be supported by our local mosque authorities to recognise this marriage in our community,” she added.


Surya felt supported by her family, saying: “My mother couldn’t be here. But she is supporting me in my marriage to Irfaan.

“She came and blessed us last night. And I have Renju Renjiamma with me, the person who has truly taken care of me as a mother would,” she continued, referring to the celebrity makeup artist.

Trans advocate Maya Krishnan said the wedding was momentous.

“This is a historic moment for the community of transgender persons – because there is no law on issues like marriage, adoption or atrocities against them in such situations,” Krishnan said.

Indian members and supporters of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender (LGBT) community take part in a pride parade in New Delhi on November 12, 2017. Hundreds of members of the LGBT community marched through the Indian capital for the 10th annual Delhi Queer Pride Parade. / AFP PHOTO / SAJJAD HUSSAIN (Photo credit should read SAJJAD HUSSAIN/AFP/Getty Images)


“This marriage has been registered at the sub registrar’s office under the Special Marriage Act.”

Progress is slowly being made in the region in terms of transgender rights.

On May 10, Pakistan’s parliament has passed a law guaranteeing basic rights for transgender people, in a move hailed by advocates as historic for the country.

The Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Act allows people to self-identify as male, female or transgender, and to have that identity recorded on official documents, including passports and ID cards.