An Indian transgender couple in Kolkata, West Bengal, have tied the knot in a traditional Bengali ceremony, and is believed to be the state’s first “rainbow wedding.” Both of them underwent sex re-assignment and had the blessings of their family and friends.

Bride Tista Das, 38, and groom Dipan Chakravarthy, 40, made a grand gesture in a landmark wedding ceremony.

“We are feeling awesome actually. We are out of the gender box and we love to be an exception and we think this is a strong bond between us,” Tista said, The Guardian reported. “It’s a bond of love. It’s a bond of liberty also,” she said. “And this is the solidarity of our souls.”

For Tista it was a long battle to “achieve her identity as a woman, as a human being”, adding: “I was not even considered as a human being in this brutal society.”

A transgender friend of the couple, Anurag Maitrayee, said the ceremony was a “beautiful, emotional union of two hearts and two souls.”

“Despite all the oddities and all the atrocities, I have seen how Tista and her journey from a man into a woman and her relation, emotion, love with a person with a soul whose journey is from a woman to a man,” Maitrayee said.

In 2014, the Supreme Court recognised transgenders as a “third gender” ensuring their constitutional rights and freedom. On Tuesday, India’s lower house passed a transgender bill to ensure the rights of transgender people in law. The bill is being discussed in the Upper House.

“The Transgender Persons Bill should be a remarkable achievement for a long-persecuted community, but the current draft fails on the fundamental right to self-identify,” Human Rights Watch South Asia director Meenakshi Ganguly said last month.

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“It’s crucial that the law be in line with the Supreme Court’s historic ruling on transgender rights.”

Feature Image Credit: The Guardian

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