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Love triumphs over bureaucracy at Indonesian mass wedding

Love was cheap in Indonesia on Tuesday when more than 4,500 couples tied the knot at a mass wedding to sidestep costly administration fees.
Indonesia mass wedding 07 19 2011Enlarge
More than 4,000 couples marry in a mass ceremony in Indonesia, sidestepping costly administration fees. (Adek Berry/AFP/Getty Images)

More than 4,500 couples tied the knot at a mass wedding in Indonesia on Tuesday, sidestepping costly administration fees.

The 4,501 couples were joined together in matrimony at a ceremony in Senayan Stadium, South Jakarta, the Jakarta Globe newspaper reported.

The newlyweds came from poor families across the capital and had already exchanged vows in religious ceremonies but could not afford the administration fees required to obtain civil marriage certificates.

"We thank God for having answered our prayers. We finally got our marriage certificate," 86-year-old groom Rahman said.

The youngest couple was a pair of 16-years-olds, the Globe reported.

Many poor Indonesians' marriages are not legally recognized because they have not been able to afford the registration fee of around $100. Millions of Indonesians learn less than $2 a day.

The Jakarta government, the Pondok Kasih Foundation and B Channel television station organized the nuptials.

"It touches my heart because ... they are the people who live in slum areas such as under the flyovers, dump-sites and others," Pondok Kasih founder Hana Ananda said.