In Rajasthan town, teacher undergoes gender change procedure, marries ex-student

Updated on Nov 08, 2022 11:12 PM IST

Aarav Kuntal’s father Biri Singh said he was happy for him and that even as a child, Aarav identified himself as a male rather than a girl

Kalpana credited her husband for training her in kabaddi. She said it was because of him that she has been able to thrice represent Rajasthan at a national level (Twitter/ANI)
Kalpana credited her husband for training her in kabaddi. She said it was because of him that she has been able to thrice represent Rajasthan at a national level (Twitter/ANI)
BySachin Saini and Suresh Foujdar

A 29-year-old physical education teacher in a Bharatpur school changed her gender and married a former student in Rajasthan on Sunday. Aarav Kuntal, 29, said he had been hoping to undergo get sex reassignment surgery since 2010 when he first read about it. He was then in class 10.

It took him a decade to finally go for the procedure. In 2019, Kuntal said he got in touch with a doctor in Delhi for the surgery. The first surgery was in December 2019 and the final procedure was in December 2021.

His wife, Kalpana Fauzdar, 21, said she always liked Aarav and would have married him even if he hadn’t undergone the procedure.

Aarav said he had always wanted to change his gender and “had never been able to accept my body”. His father Biri Singh agreed, recalling how Aarav, the youngest of his five daughters who was called Meera, had always been the family “tomboy”. “Everyone called him bhaiya (brother),” Biri Singh told reporters after Aarav and Kalpana’s wedding on Sunday.

“I used to think that he will never get married,” he conceded.

Aarav said he and Kalpana became good friends when she was his student at school. “I taught her kabbadi,” he said. “She has thrice played for the state and has been the captain of the Rajasthan team,” he added, beaming with pride.

Kalpana acknowledges how he and kabbadi changed her life. “He taught me the game and always supported me. Whatever I am is all because of him…. I have played state thrice, and all because of him.”

When Aarav had to go for the surgery, he asked Kalpana and a childhood friend to be by his side. It was this friend who told them that they should get married.

Aarav proposed to her when she was in Maharashtra to play for the nationals. “He asked me to marry him on phone. And I said yes. I told my family members…. They liked him. And now we are married,” she said.

But the decision was not without its share of doubts. Kalpana said there was a point when they wondered what people would say. “But his friend guided us and told us to live our lives and don’t think what people think or so,” she said.

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Wednesday, November 30, 2022
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