August 31st, 2016
A Kerala couple resorted to just some simple paper work for their marriage instead of opting for the festivities and pomp that are usually associated with other weddings in the state. There marriage was upright simple, yet totally an exceptional one.
Sruthi Krishna from Wayanad and Ramnath from Alappuzha — friends for almost six years — decided to tie the knot simply at a marriage registrar’s office. They are pursuing their Ph.D in Feminist Discourse in Public Sphere and Transgender Issues respectively, from Gujarat Central University. Their marriage, indeed, was a blow to all the stereotypes.
Firstly, showing no obsession for gold, the bride did not wear a single gram of gold and wore simple jewellery made with cereals and jute. Then, they also decided that only the women in the family will sign as main witnesses for the marriage and not male members.
And finally, the most significant one was inviting a transgender to become the main witness of their marriage. They wanted to their marriage to be a move towards transgender acceptance and gender equality. Therefore, one of their special guests was Sheethal Shyam, a popular LGBTQ activist in Kerala and also the state-level Secretary of the Sexual Minorities Forum Kerala (SMFK).
“We wanted people like our amma (mother), chechi (sister)- who generally do not wield so much of power in a patriarchal household, to be witnesses on paper, and for a change, that the men in the house to be just witnesses,” Shruthi told The Indian Express.
Sheethal, who has worked for 15 years with LGBTQ community in Kerala, was delighted being a witness of their marriage.
The couple believe that their marriage will be able to highlight the importance of gender equality in India and will be able to inspire many.
Shruthi, unlike most of the Malayalees, also chose not to take her husband’s name after marriage.