Puducherry

On a transgender’s struggles

Welfare Minister P. Rajavelu launches a poetry book by Kalki Subramaniam (centre) in Puducherry. Activist Selvi is in the picture.— Photo: Special Arrangement

Welfare Minister P. Rajavelu launches a poetry book by Kalki Subramaniam (centre) in Puducherry. Activist Selvi is in the picture.— Photo: Special Arrangement

Transgender activist and actor Kalki Subramaniam has dedicated a new volume of Tamil poetry, Kuri Aruthaen , to the third gender in the country. This is probably the first poetry publication by a transgender activist.

Tourism Minister P. Rajavelu launched the book which the activist has brought out as an encouragement to transgenders.

Ms. Subramaniam started putting down her thoughts two years ago on her Facebook wall which were well received on the social media. This led her to publish her first book, says the activist, who has also played the lead role in the Tamil film, Narthaki , a coming of age story of a transgender person.

The book was published by Vikatan Publishers.

“It is about the deep emotional feelings of a transgender’s life… the emotional need for love, psychological support, romance, betrayal, change, bright future, parental support, environment and the ignorance of society. It is about the struggles faced by the transgenders retold by one of their own,” says Ms. Subramaniam.

Her poetry has already received rave reviews from prominent writer Palani Bharathi, poet Kabilan Vairamuthu and other prominent media personalities.

The speakers at the event who felicitated Ms. Subramaniam were industrialist Ravi Chandran Raj, activist Siva Elango, Tamil Siddhars Foundation founder Selvi and prominent artist and sculptor Geoffrey Witte.

According to Ms. Subramaniam, transgenders are bold and creative but most often misunderstood. She was born and raised in Pollachi but currently residing in Kottakarai village inside Auroville. Her mother and two sisters are very supportive of her activities.

The Sahodari Foundation run by her is not only a voice for the transgenders but also women empowerment and rural development. She holds a double Masters degree in Journalism and Mass Communication as well as International Affairs.

Her next book is a semi-autobiographical novel in Tamil and she is also working on a non-fiction English book for the young people.


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Printable version | May 29, 2022 10:44:32 am | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/puducherry/on-a-transgenders-struggles/article6813674.ece