LGBTQ

The temple in Kerala where transgenders meet to celebrate

The temple festival in Kerala where men cross dress to celebrate their gender and sexuality
Transgender man in kerala temple

(Names changed to protect identity)

The cross-dressing festival for men in Kerala

“Are the pleats okay?” Renji asked for the last time before exiting the green room. He checked himself in the mirror. He was wearing a maroon chiffon sari, with sequins on it. His face shone more in joy than due to the chamayavilakku he was carrying.

Renji was a transgender from Palakkad, Kerala.

He was attending the chamayavilakku at Kottankulangara temple, Kollam, Kerala for the seventh time. A celebration, an offering, by men of all ages, cross-dressing as women. They adorned themselves with jewellery and beautified their faces with thick makeup. Men did it as a thanksgiving for the blessings of the goddess Vanadurga.

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