A picture of a Buddhist monk performing a special rite on someone who appears to be a woman and who is topless has gone viral and drawn widespread criticism from Thai netizens because monks are not allowed to touch females.
However, the story took a twist on Sunday morning when the person in the photo who took part in the charm-boosting rite released a comment: "I'm a transgender who has not had a gender change operation. My chest looks bigger than usual because I have been taking birth control pills."
The transgender said he and his family invited a renowned monk from Oddar Meanchey, Cambodia to their house in Bangkok on Feb 23. They asked the monk, who came with many followers, to perform the rite for them.
The men taking part have to take off their shirts and let the monk write on their bodies. As for women, the monk can write on their foreheads, he explained.
"The leaked picture has made me unhappy and ashamed. More importantly, it has damaged this monk's reputation," the unnamed transgender added.