India witnesses its first sologamy marriage amidst full rituals
New Delhi, Jun 09: India witnessed its first sologamy as a Gujarati woman Kshama Bindu married herself with all the wedding rituals of a haldi and mehendi. The self-marriage took place a few days ahead of schedule as she wanted to avoid any controversy after a leader of the BJP opposed her wedding and said that she would not be allowed to marry inside a Temple.
Following the wedding she thanked everyone in a video message. "I would like to thank everyone who has messaged me and congratulated me and gave me the power to fight for what I believed in," she said on Facebook.
Experts, however, said that a sologamy' or self-marriage would not have any legal standing in India.
Speaking about her intentions, Kshama Bindu said she wished to break stereotypes and inspire others who are "tired of finding true love."
Bindu, who identifies as bisexual, also claimed that her marriage will be the first instance of sologamy in India.
"At one point in my life, I realised that I don't require a prince charming because I am my own queen. I want the wedding day, but not the next day. That is why I have decided to marry myself on June 11. I will dress up like a bride, take part in rituals, my friends will attend my wedding and then I will come back to my house instead of going with the groom," she told reporters.
Bindu, who is a working professional, added that her mother, who lives in another city, has given her consent for this unusual "groom-less" wedding.
"I have already booked a pandit (priest) to solemnise my marriage. I have observed that unlike in the West, self marriages are not popular in India. Hence, I have decided to start this trend and inspire others. People may not like my idea, I am confident that I am doing the right thing," she said.
Reacting to comments that she was doing it for publicity, Bindu said she is already popular on social media as an influencer.
"I just want to break stereotypes and inspire others to love themselves. There are people who are tired of finding love or getting divorced multiple times. Being a bisexual, I was also in love with a man and a woman in the past. But now, I want to give all the love to myself," she said.
Legal experts, however, say that sologamy does not have any legal backing in India.
"As per Indian laws, you cannot marry yourself. There has to be two persons in a marriage. Sologamy is not legal," senior High Court advocate Krishnakant Vakharia said.
Another senior lawyer Chandrakant Gupta said, "The Hindu Marriage Act uses the terminology 'either of the spouse', which simply means that there must be two persons to complete the marriage. Sologamy will never pass the legal scrutiny."