A female lawyer in India had a sex change to save herself from a forced marriage by her family, The Times of India reported Sunday.

"I feel free now. No one can force me to marry. It is better to become a man to get rid of sufferings met by women,” she said.

Doctors of the woman, who is in her mid-30s, and was not named, said they were obliged to perform the operation as she threatened suicide.

However, sources told The Times the woman was "close to a girl" and they wanted to spend their life together, but her parents were preparing her marriage, so she had the surgery.

The woman had the seven-hour surgery in a private hospital at Bhubaneswar, in India's north-east on June 29.

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