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I quietly slipped into Bangalore for a couple of days… where the topic of “foreigner registration” in India came up.
When you move, updating your address is a necessary bother anywhere in the world. But in India, it can be an incredibly painful process. I changed apartments nearly two years ago and it took only three months to get my bank to update it, another two months for my mobile service provider… however in a baffling twist, I became “Mr Hickling” in the process?!
To “fix” that, one needs a form, an indemnification letter requesting changing gender on 1 Rupee legal stamp paper, passport sized photos, original proof of gender with certified copies and apply in person to present the evidence. I guess the fact that I’m unmistakably female, haven’t undergone a sex change operation and someone somewhere incorrectly selected “Mr” instead of “Ms” in their system is entirely irrelevant?! (more…)