Salma is a well-known name to readers of contemporary Tamil literature. With two volumes of poetry, Oru Maalaiyum Innoru Maalaiyum and Pacchai Devadai, a novel, Irandaam Jaamangalin Kadhai, and a short story collection titled Saapam, Salma has made her mark as a distinctive literary voice. Lakshmi Holmstrom’s translation of one of Salma’s novels, The Hour Past Midnight, was shortlisted for the Crossword Book Prize and long-listed for The DSC Prize for South Asian Literature and the Man Asian Literary Prize. Her works have been translated to many languages including German, Galician, Malayalam and Marathi. Her life story was chronicled in the award-winning documentary, Salma by Kim Longinotto.
Salma is a committed public servant, and has served as President of the Ponnampatti Panchayat and Chairman of the Social Welfare Board (Govt. of Tamil Nadu), during which time she was instrumental in establishing several welfare schemes, including some landmark ones directed towards the transgender community.
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