As police Thursday detained Asian games gold medalist Pinki Pramanik after a complaint was filed that she is a male and has allegedly raped a woman, leading gynaecologists feel genetic problems can lead to dual sexual identity.
"Such kind of incidents are quite common, where due to genetic reasons we can find females with male features. A female, who is genetically female, may have male features which are quite dominant," said Aruna Tantia, a gynaecologist.
Pramanik was arrested after a complaint was made that she is a male and has allegedly raped a woman, police said Thursday.
Following the complaint, Pramanik was taken to a private nursing home for a medical checkup where the test reports claimed she was a male. She, however, refused to sign the forms for a second test at a government hospital. Police later obtained a court order to conduct another medical checkup at a government hospital soon to determine her sex.
Another gynaecologist Partha Sarathi Banerjee, however, said it was quite possible that the athlete may have undergone a sex change after retiring from sports.
"The question is whenever an athlete participates in a tournament there is a physical checkup and it is nearly impossible to hide one's sexual identity. But there is a possibility that the athlete might have gone for a sex change after retiring. In case of sex change, such kind of things are quite possible," he told IANS.
Pramanik won gold in 4Ã400 metres relay at the 2006 Asian Games in Doha, Qatar. She was a silver medalist at the Melbourne Commonwealth Games the same year.
She retired from athletics three years ago.