A matrimonial advertisement placed by Padma Iyer in mid-day looking for a groom for her son has generated keen response getting over 150 inquiries, including a few hate mails.
Those who have shown interest in the proposal include a few from abroad and cuts across religious divide. The ad had led to a heated debate in social media with gay and lesbian activists supporting the move of 58-year-old Padma Iyer, while others slammed the idea of same-sex marriage saying homosexuality is illegal in India.
Harrish Iyer (36) and his mother Padma (58) placed a groundbreaking gay matrimonial ad yesterday. Many have hailed the ad as the first of its kind in the country.
The advertisement published in mid-day on May 19 said "Seeking 25-40, Well-placed, Animal-Loving, Vegetarian GROOM for my SON (36, 5'11") who works with an NGO..."
The man who is looking for a partner is 36-year-old activist Harish Iyer, who works with a local NGO. "Yes, out of the 150 responses that my mother has received so far, about 75 per cent of them are encouraging while a few others are hate and abusive mails," Harish, who realised his sexual orientation at a young age of 14 and revealed it to his mother at 22, told PTI.
"I am going through the offers that I have received from across the world, including Indian cities, and I will take my own time to finalise a proposal," he said.
When asked about the hate mails that they have received, Harish, an LGBT activist, said, "Few of those hate and abusive mails have warned us that we are involved in destroying family institution. But, the reality is that me and my mother don't take such (hate) mails seriously. On the contrary, few mails have lauded our bold decision," said Harish, who works for the rights of education, income and health of the common man.
Padma has received mails from USA, Australia, England and Saudi Arabia. So far, as Indians are concerned, apart from the community she belongs, many are from different states and of various religious backgrounds, Padma said.
Harish has praised his mother saying, "I'm proud of her. It was her idea. My mum was like: 'You don't have a boyfriend, you're not so young.' She was concerned about her ageing son like any Indian mother would be, irrespective of whether he is homosexual or heterosexual."