Meet India’s first transgender newsreader Padmini Prakash

Meet India’s first transgender newsreader Padmini Prakash

India’s first transgender news anchor has appeared on regional television just months after the country’s Supreme Court recognised transgender people as a legal third gender. Padmini Prakash, 31, worked as a dance instructor and acted in soaps before being recruited to Lotus News in the southern state of Tamil Nadu. She told the Times of India she was disowned by her family when she told them she was transgender and has faced discrimination throughout her life. But she has won widespread praise since her first broadcast in August. “I was very worried because I also had to focus on my diction and maintain a steady narrative pace to ensure that there was clarity and viewers could understand me,” Ms Prakash said. Her popularity with viewers ensured a rapid promotion to become the face of the daily 7pm news bulletin. G.K.S. Selvakumar, chairman of Lotus News, told the Times of India the channel was “very supportive”. “After initial trials, we were convinced that she had the potential to be an excellent news anchor,” he said. Ms Prakash has been involved in transgender rights activism in the past, protesting against the discrimination, harassment and stigma experienced by sexual minorities in India. Campaigners estimate there are hundreds of thousands of transgender people in the country but because they were not legally recognised until earlier this year, they have been ostracised, faced abuse and often been forced into prostitution. In April, the Supreme Court’s landmark ruling recognised ‘transgender’ as a legal third gender and called on the government to ensure equal treatment. Nepal, Pakistan and Bangladesh have also legally recognised the transgender community....
How and Where to find your Perfect Thai Ladyboy Girlfriend. P2.

How and Where to find your Perfect Thai Ladyboy Girlfriend. P2.

2. Be a Man with a Plan When I came to Thailand I thought I was through with relationships and I was happy about that. Having experienced several long-term relationships and three marriages (and divorces) in the UK I planned to relish the freedom that an escape to Thailand offered. However, after settling in Thailand I realised that I really missed having a girlfriend and after one disastrous, chastening and frankly heart-breaking ‘save-a whore’ experience I made a plan. Yes, I actively planned and used a set of criteria to find a real girlfriend and I can tell you how you can do it too. I am not suggesting that you never do anything spontaneous. That would take the fun out of things completely and getting yourself out of ‘scrapes’ with our ladyboy brethren will be terrific learning tools, providing you survive. Free yourself from western guilt but stick to your western principles. Dating in Thailand differs from dating in the west in a number of ways. Dating ladyboys differs from dating genetic women in a number of ways too. You will have heard the stories about prostitution and how western men come to Thailand because they can’t get a girlfriend or get laid in their own countries. Most of those stories and comments you may hear or read come from western women who have such an enormous sense of entitlement that even the richest, sexiest, kindest man alive would still disappoint them simply by being a man. Marriage in the west is also such a minefield that many, men, even young men, have ‘swallowed the red pill’ and...
How and Where to find your Perfect Thai Ladyboy Girlfriend.

How and Where to find your Perfect Thai Ladyboy Girlfriend.

1. Introduction Annie, who is my perfect girlfriend, told me that the best way for a foreign man to find a ladyboy girlfriend is for him to walk out into the street and open his eyes, ears and mouth! While it may not seem as easy as that in Thailand’s teeming and eclectic metropolis; Bangkok, there is a simple wisdom in her advice. A favourite bon mot of Thai people is ‘Don’t think too much!’ There are lots of websites about Thailand and Thai women or Ladyboys. Those I have read seem to be written by intellectual midgets, children (men under 30) or misogynist sex tourists with an axe to grind about ladyboys. You will be treated to stories of how the blog writer does not pay for sex and is always surrounded by beautiful university girls and sneers at sex tourists or how no Thai girl should ever be trusted and will ruin your life if you let them. Many of these so-called writers clearly have little experience of Thailand and its denizens, perhaps only writing from the perspective of a tourist. Even the best of these writings offer a polarised view of Thailand and its dating scene. The characters in the stories are bad men, bad girls and no hope. The truth is full of shade, colour and subtlety. In my experience almost all men living in Thailand have paid for sex at some time or still do even if it’s only from time to time. Some men choose to pay for sex all the time. They actively choose this in preference to having a girlfriend, or...
American Football, the LA Experience

American Football, the LA Experience

It’s been a lot of years but the memories are still vivid although they are abstract sounds and colours of flashing tangents and collisions at high speed. I did not enter football as an ex-rugby player but as an ex-soldier and athlete. I began helping with the conditioning of a small team in the UK and graduated to plating for better and better teams. My time in America was mostly spent in Los Angeles, California where I covertly tried to ‘make it’ in football. I say covertly because I was ostensibly there for more practical, sensible reasons; transferred from the UK with a financial giant, C.I.C.A. Over a period of about 5 years I spent about 3 of them in L.A. After playing in the UK for a big team I went on tour to Australia and the USA with the British team and met the current Raiders team in the Red Onion Bar in Hermosa Beach at a joint press and publicity function. Those guys encouraged me to get a contract with the Raiders franchise, even if I never played, ‘think of the money’, they said. The British team coach arranged for John Johnson the Rams scout to take a look at me and consequently I spent the pre-season with  the Raiders on his recommendation. No contract yet, no money either but I was rubbing shoulders with the ‘greats’. Every day I worked out alongside Howie Long and Steve Smith. I was never approaching good enough but i was heartened to know that I was able to run the 40 in 4.8 secs. That’s probably pretty slow today...
Ladyboys the Documentary

Ladyboys the Documentary

Ladyboys the website began like this, one evening in Convent Street or Soi Convent, Silom; It’s hot, fucking hot and humid and just getting dark and I am sweating as I listen to question after question as we stand on the road together. In the way that only journalists can, Charlie and Dee press on regardless, earnestly, sympathetically, apologetically but pressing on is what they must do because they are deep in the shit now. They have made a mistake and now they are making another while trying to undo the first. They are too deadline orientated to care that while they may be able to extract information about Thai ladyboys from inside of my head they will never be able to truly ‘know’ that knowledge; not in their bodies the way that I know. Knowing in the body is where it’s at. Anything less than experiencing with the body is just ‘talking the talk’. Now they are asking me to tell them precisely what ‘walking the walk’ means, assuming that I am able to do that. That assumption is mistake number three, a repeat of mistake number one: asking questions without understanding the source of the answers and believing blindly what they are told. After reading Bangkok Baby, they have asked me to to help them write about Thai ladyboys and tonight they are lucky. I know some of the answers and all of the questions. The where, what, why, and how of ladyboys is galloped through without pause, without understanding. It’s becoming tedious. Then just like that, the night snapped its fingers and the quality of the...