Kerala: Breaking stereotypes, transsexual couple to get married next month
Once, there was a "woman" and a "man" who were ostracised by their families and harassed by the society over their transgender status.
But, Ishan and Surya are now all set to break several stereotypes in the society and set an example as the first transsexual couple to marry in Kerala, having undergone sex change surgeries some years ago.
Here's all about them.
Couple to tie knot in auspicious ceremony on May 10
Just like any ordinary man and woman, they will be marrying in an auspicious ceremony at an auditorium in Thiruvananthapuram on May 10, with the blessings and support of family members and friends.
Religious barriers and societal stigma have not deterred the transgender couple, in their 30s, from their decision to enter into wedlock and lead a normal life.
Surya always cherished the dream of becoming a bride
A known TV artist, Surya said ze had always cherished the dream of becoming a bride like any other woman.
"We both have suffered a lot over our gender. We're excluded and marginalized by the society once," ze said.
"But, now, everyone is starting to accept us. I hope, this marriage will help us getting more acceptance in the family and society," Surya said.
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Surya underwent the sex change surgery in 2014
Hailing from a middle-class family in Vattiyurkkavu, Surya underwent the sex change surgery and became a woman in 2014. The 31-year-old transwoman said ze had been living separately from zir family for years as zir parents and siblings couldn't accept Surya's choice of gender.
Ishan met Surya while working in an NGO
The story of 33-year-old Ishan, a member of a conventional Muslim family at Vallakkadavu, is also not different.
Ze met Surya while working in an NGO engaged in the welfare of transgenders.
Ishan said ze had to suffer a lot to make zir family and community understand zir gender issues. A woman before, Ishan had undergone the sex reassignment surgery three years ago.
How did Ishan propose to Surya for marriage?
"I proposed Surya and conveyed my wish to marry zir. I was particular that it should be a legal marriage and we want to live a normal life like any other couple," Ishan said.
"We're trying to set a model to our fellows transgender"
The transsexual couple is excited as both families have given their nod for the marriage and promised all support.
"We are trying to set a model to our fellows transgender and prove that we can also live a normal life like any others in the society," they said.
Both Surya and Ishan are members of the government's Transgender's Justice Board.
There are over 35,000 transgenders in Kerala
According to unofficial figures, there are over 35,000 transgenders in Kerala, which unveiled the country's first transgender policy in 2015.
Same Sex Marriage