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Transgender community wants free sex-change surgery

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Thiruvananthapuram: The members of India’s transgender (TG) community on Friday expressed their concern over mounting expenses involved in sex reassignment surgery (SRS) in the country, demanding government’s look over this matter to make the procedure of surgery absolutely free.

At the ongoing International Conference on Gender Equality (ICGE-2015) being held here, participating members also called for ways to create better awareness on gender status to curb a general tendency to ridicule and harass TGs.

Sonu Niranjan, a TG who works as a training officer at Bengaluru, called upon authorities to make SRS devoid of fees for people desiring to change sex.

I come from a very humble background. When I began facing several objections and abuses about my gender, I decided to change myself from female to a man. I was surprised that the expenses amounted to around Rs.3 lakh. I request the government to help our community and make the surgery free of cost,

She said that the doctors should be given proper awareness about gender change.

On completion of my surgery, I felt that doctors were experimenting with my body as well as my feelings. There should be a proper counselling session for the doctors in this regard,

Noted activist Akkai Padmashali also spoke on similar lines.
“Who decides that we are third genders? If society is deciding it, we call them as patriarchal one,” said Padmashali, who has been nominated for Rajyotsava Award, the second highest civilian award by the Karnataka government.

(Inputs from IANS)

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‘A Fantastic Woman’ Could Have Been Paramount in Portraying a Transgender Woman’s Struggle

"A Fantastic Woman" fails to carry us along in its protagonist's tough journey from bereavement to isolation to confrontation to settlement. Marina can't wait to get out of it.

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Daniella Vega
'A fantastic Women' seems stretched out. Flickr

Film: “A Fantastic Woman” (Spanish, with English Subtitles, based on a transgender woman); Director: Sebastian Lelio; Starring: Daniela Vega; Rating: 1/2 (2 and a half stars)

“A Fantastic Woman” could have been penetrating portrait of a transgender woman’s struggle for dignity after her middle-aged lover suddenly dies on her.

Marina (played with consummate sensitivity by Daniela Vega) never quite recovers from the traumatic shock. Neither does the film. It quickly goes downhill from the point of tragedy, building what looks like a shell-shocked narrative in-sync with the stupor that falls over Daniela’s soul after Orlando (Francisco Reyes) passes away.

The ensuing trauma of a ‘woman’ who is unacceptable to society for her gender and status in the life of the man she loved, is brought out like a dentist extracting rotten teeth. It is a graceless situation.And director Sebastian Lelio goes with the frown, rendering every crease in Daniela’s disheveled existence in shades of black and fright.

Daniela Vega
Spanish makes the dialogue-heavy sequences, makes it seem unnecessarily stretched-out and verbose. Flickr

Daniela’s dilemma is so in-your-face, it hardly needed to be affirmed so strongly by the narrative. Her humiliation is shown in scenes in the hospital and at the police station. And we know what happens to the mistress specially when she is gender-challenged. But Marina’s behaviour post the tragedy eschews empathy. She frets, fumes, snarls and at one point even jumps on to the car of her deceased lover’s family to bounce up and down.

By this point the edgy narrative begins to look uneasily unfocused.

Perhaps Marina’s unconventional methods of protest are a cultural things. Maybe in Chile, the conventions of bereavement are played out at a pitch that seems fairly bizarre to us. Also, the fact that the film is in Spanish makes the dialogue-heavy sequences, such as the one where Marina is confronted by Orlando’s wife in a car basement, seems unnecessarily stretched-out and verbose.

Also Read: Eating diorder can be treated in transgenders

“A Fantastic Woman” fails to carry us along in its protagonist’s tough journey from bereavement to isolation to confrontation to settlement. Marina can’t wait to get out of it.

Neither can we. (IANS)