After waiting for a year, man-transwoman couple to get marriage certificate this Valentine's Day

The Inspector-General of Registration, Chennai, had sent a notification to all district and sub-registrar offices on January 28 asking them to register marriages of transgenders.
 

Published: 14th February 2020 09:53 AM  |   Last Updated: 14th February 2020 09:53 AM   |  A+A-

The duo was struggling to have their marriage registered ever since they got married on February 14, 2018.

The duo was struggling to have their marriage registered ever since they got married on February 14, 2018.

Express News Service

COIMBATORE: This Valentine's Day will be special for 25-year-old R Manigandan and 24-year-old Surega, a man-transwoman couple in Coimbatore who have been striving hard to get their marriage registered because they have won in their battle against all odds.

The duo was struggling to have their marriage registered ever since they got married on February 14, 2018. It was not that the society was against them. On the contrary, they were accepted by society.

Instead, it was the law, or lack of it, that authorities cited while repeatedly refusing to register their marriage.

However, officials from the Registration Department in Coimbatore recently informed Manigandan and Surega that their marriage will be registered under the Tamil Nadu Registration of Marriages Act, 2009.

The Inspector-General of Registration, Chennai, had sent a notification to all district and sub-registrar offices on January 28 asking them to register marriages of transgenders.

Manigandan and Surega breathed a sigh of relief as the notification brought them double happiness. One, their struggle to register the marriage would end and second, this announcement would enable any transgender couple across the State to register their marriage.

Not wanting to waste any time, the couple communicated to authorities that they wish to register their marriage on Valentine's Day.

"Our family members and friends were so happy upon hearing the information," said Surega, adding that their marriage registration would take place at the sub-registrar's office in Vadavalli.

"We were told that we would be the first couple of our kind to get our marriage registered in the district," she added.

Manigandan, on the other hand, said the marriage certificate would enable them to adopt a child.

When contacted, Coimbatore District Registrar A Suresh Kumar said, "It was only recently that we received a communication from Chennai on the matter. The couple can now register their marriage. Besides, the delay was due to confusion over the bridegroom's date of birth as he had mentioned different dates in his identity proof."

Transgender activist Kalki Subramaniam said, "Marriage is our fundamental right. Us transgenders have been forced to get our rights. Officials must educate themselves on the rulings made by the court. However, I am happy that the couple's struggle has now bore fruit. The notification will be helpful for other transgenders to get their marriage certificates.
 

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