Gay Indian Couple Holds A Traditional Wedding Ceremony In A Hindu Temple, And Their Photos Go Viral

Love knows no boundaries. That’s what Amit Shah and Aditya Madiraju proved when they got married during a traditional, religious Hindu ceremony, in a temple in New Jersey.

The Indian couple’s impressive and stylish wedding was immortalized by professional photographer Charmi Peña. Her pictures from the event were such a success, they immediately went viral. Which is why the entire internet is busy talking about Amit and Aditya’s union. 

More info: Instagram | Charmi Peña

Courtesy : Bored Panda

Image credits: Charmi Pena Photography
Image credits: Charmi Pena Photography

Photographer Charmi talked to Bored Panda about the fantastic wedding, as well as a bit about herself: “I knew I was documenting something big for the Indian community. And my gut feeling has been borne out in the tons of messages from LGBTQ people who have said that the images give them hope.”

“I’m excited of course — but mostly happy that people are seeing them,” Charmi elaborated about how she felt about her photos going viral. “Representation matters, and knowing how seeing themselves reflected is helping people, is so fulfilling for me.”

“I have a bit of a bad memory. But when I see photos I remember everything: the smells, the sounds — the emotions. Photography lets me give that to others,” Charmi revealed to Bored Panda about her love of photography. She also said that she didn’t always know she’d wind up as a photographer. She’s Indian just like Amit and Aditya: “I thought I was going to be a doctor!”

Image credits: Charmi Pena Photography
Image credits: Charmi Pena Photography

Dance choreographer Amit, who is 32, and his husband Aditya, who is 31 and works in risk management, are both practicing Hindus. Tradition is very important to them. That’s why after dating for a few years, they filled out the paperwork for a civil union in New York City at the start of 2019, and then also decided to have a traditional ceremony in New Jersey on July 19. The pair wore striking kurtas by designer Anita Dongre during the actual wedding ceremony.

“We didn’t realize the impact a simple wedding at a temple would have on people around the world looking for hope,” Amit and Aditya wrote on Instagram. Aditya told Irish News that “Having a traditional wedding is something that wasn’t out of the ordinary for either of us as we come from pretty traditional and conservative backgrounds.”

Image credits: Charmi Pena Photography
Image credits: Charmi Pena Photography

Meanwhile, Amit explained to Vogue India that the couple first met “three years ago in a small Lower East Side bar for a friend’s birthday. Since that night, we have been together.”

“Although we have completely different personalities, thanks to our similar interests we hit it off instantly,” Amit told the media. He also revealed that the pair ‘came out’ to their parents after dating for a year, and were rewarded with lots of support.

Image credits: Charmi Pena Photography
Image credits: Charmi Pena Photography

In India, same-sex marriage hasn’t been recognized legally yet, with opinions on the issue varying from disapproving to favorable, depending on the area, community and temple in question.

Image credits: Charmi Pena Photography
Image credits: Charmi Pena Photography
Image credits: Charmi Pena Photography
Image credits: Charmi Pena Photography
Image credits: Charmi Pena Photography
Image credits: Charmi Pena Photography
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