Abolish GST on Sanitary Napkins

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Dear Hon'ble Ministers,

#AbolishGSTonSanitaryNapkins

I am an Indian woman who, by God's grace and the wonderful people around, (i) was able to take birth, (ii) did not get molested as a child, (iii) was provided with all hygiene and care, (iv) been educated in premiere institutes, (iv) traveled alone at night safely without getting raped, (vi) have never been sexually harassed at work, (vii) have a loving husband and caring in-laws ... all things that should be taken for granted by many but that actually is a rarity. I have been really lucky. But most of the women in our country suffer daily, and for those who are victims of female infanticide, it is another story. While we, as women, understand that making India a safer and better place for its women is not something that can be achieved overnight, abolishing GST on sanitary napkins is surely doable. In a country where most of the female population cannot either afford or are ignorant about sanitary napkins, raising the GST to 12% from 6% is like kicking us in our gut and saying that we are really the second class citizen of the land. It is periods that unifies women irrespective of their caste, creed and religion. A woman may choose not to marry, have sex or reproduce (or may want but fail), but menstruation is inevitable for at least 40 years of our lives and is the symbol of womanhood. Condoms and sindoor are not going to take this nation forward, but are still tax free. Could there be any more blatant representation of patriarchy? Sirs, please understand, we do not particularly enjoy the monthly bleeding, it is something we are forced to endure from an early age by nature so that we can give birth to great men (women?) like you. The least you can do is not bleed our pockets as well! Long Live Swachh Bharat Abhiyan, eh?

Imploring,

Basundhara Ghosh



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