Free Sanitary Pads/Menstrual Cup by Govt of India to females living below the poverty line

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As per a recent article in 'Times of India' & many other newspapers/websites, only 18% women in India have access to sanitary hygiene in India. Most of the women/girls from the remaining 82 % are using substitutes like unhygienic cloths & other unsafe alternatives like sand, ash, jute sack, leaves, newspapers, etc.

Another report published by UNICEF and WaterAid found that more than a third of girls in South Asia miss school during their periods, mainly due to lack of access to toilets and pads in schools 

12-year-old Bholi’s uterus was removed because she had contracted a reproductive tract infection. Bholi hails from a small village in Madhya Pradesh and represents a large population of Indian women who suffer at the hands of illiteracy. Just like Bholi, millions of women in India fall prey to low standards of sanitation and menstrual hygiene.

These facts are devastating, shocking & an eye-opener for each one of us. Menstrual health is a comprehensive, multifaceted issue, and evidences have shown the dire need to address it. We certainly need to bring a change in the conditions of the women living below the poverty line and make them healthier & happy. 

Our Indian Constitution incorporates provisions guaranteeing everyone’s right to the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health. Article 21 of the Constitution guarantees the protection of life and personal liberty to every citizen. The Supreme Court has held that the right to live with human dignity, enshrined in Article 21, derives from the directive principles of state policy and therefore includes protection of health. Further, it has also been held that the right to health is integral to the right to life and the government has a constitutional obligation to provide health facilities. Health, as defined by the World Health Organization (WHO), is "a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.

In the recent Lok Sabha election campaign, political parties promised around Rs 5000/- to 6000/- per month to those families who are living below the poverty line whereas the cost of hygienic sanitary pads ranges from Rs 10/- - Rs 12/- for a month's usage. 

We urge honorable prime minister Sh. Narendra Modi ji & government of India to hear the silent cry of these poor women/girls, who are suffering every month because of the lack of hygienic amenities, and provide them eco-friendly pads, menstrual cups or tampons. 

Let's all create a noise & make an effort to eliminate the monster of period poverty from India.

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