Day after choosing life partner, three hearing impaired couples tie the knot

Day after choosing life partner, three hearing impaired couples tie the knot

As weddings go, this one is as colourful as anything you might find.

Brides donning red saris and grooms wearing half-sleeve shirts and dhotis sat in a line as priests performed the rituals at this community-style wedding.

The smiling couples, all of whom are hearing impaired, met on Tuesday at a match-making event organised by the Swayamwaraa Trust.

On Tuesday, the hearing impaired individuals gathered at the event with their parents. "I'm happy to have found this girl," one of the grooms, Vinod, gestured excitedly. "She's really good. We'll start planning our life together."

Vinod and his wife are among eight couples selected from a group of singles who turned up at the match-making event.

"To date, we've performed 4,950 weddings of people with hearing impairment," trust founder C N Vijayaraju said, adding, "This we've done in 17 years."

Vijayaraju, who started Swayamwaraa Trust by selling his properties, said the organisation also performs weddings for youngsters from poor families. He said the trust has also been approaching many individuals for financial assistance.

Dr B N Pranesh Rao, who is part of the trust and a professor of audiology, said consanguinity - or marriage between two closely related individuals - must be stopped because it can produce children with genetic defects and disabilities.

Nearly 1,500 people attended the marriage ceremony, including parents and relatives of the brides and grooms and hearing impaired singles looking for life partners.

Unlike other marriages, there was very little noise here. All the guests, including the parents and relatives of the brides and grooms, were passing instructions and wishes in sign language.

The couples getting married were also from different states. And why not? All of them know sign language, the universal medium of communication for them.

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