The transgender community in Chhattisgarh, central India organized a mass wedding of 15 couples over the weekend.
The two-day celebrations were attended by hundreds of well-wishers, local community members, and even politicians.
The couples traveled from six different states to partake in the ceremony.
India’s Supreme Court in 2014 recognized trans identities as a third gender and ensured their constitutional rights.
But, transgender individuals remain shunned by mainstream society.
In May last year, a local government made history by organizing the wedding party for a transgender couple.
This weekend’s ceremony was also backed by local officials.
‘Work has been done on education and livelihood, but this was something that we felt needed to happen’ said one of the organizers, Siddharth.
‘What is extremely beautiful to watch is that the families are here too’ SIddharth said. ‘I cannot believe this day has come’.
The festivities began on Friday (29 March) evening with a sangeet, a night of music before the wedding.
On Saturday afternoon, the grooms’ wedding procession swept through the streets of Raipur.
Among the guests in the evening were former minister Brijmohan Agrawa and representatives from the Indian National Congress and ruling Bharatiya Janata Party.
Siddharth said they had received hundreds of applications to take part in the ceremony but had had to choose only 15.
‘The men getting married today are extraordinarily brave, and have faced brickbats from their families for being in love with someone who doesn’t have social acceptability’ Siddharth said.
Organizers said the wedding was also organized to celebrate the decriminalization of gay sex last year.