Sanitary Pads are a Right. Haryana Government Will Provide Them Free to Menstruating Women


Sanitary Pads are a Right. Haryana Government Will Provide Them Free to Menstruating Women

Illustration: Robin Chakraborty

There is enough news out there to drag everyone’s spirits down. The Covid-19 pandemic shows no signs of abating, the Northeast has witnessed devastating floods, and rains have pummelled Mumbai yet again. However, there is a sliver of good news from Haryana, a state not traditionally known for initiatives for women. However, on Wednesday, the Haryana government launched a scheme guaranteed to bring a smile to the faces of 22.50 lakh women and girls below the poverty line. Under the Mahila Evam Kishori Samman Yojana, the women are entitled to a packet of free sanitary pads every month for a year.

The scheme is expected to reach out to women between 10-45 years. Each of the packets will contain six sanitary napkins.

In addition, the Mukhya Mantri Doodh Uphar Yojana will provide fortified flavoured skimmed milk powder to children aged 1-6 years, in anganwadi centres. The scheme aims to provide 200 ml of milk powder every day for six days a week. The yojana is also extended to pregnant and lactating mothers, and is expected to benefit 9.03 lakh children and 2.95 lakh pregnant and lactating mothers in the state.

Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar, who launched the schemes, said that the flagship programmes were targeted efforts toward addressing the problem of anaemia and malnutrition among women and children, especially in districts like Nuh. The CM was joined by beneficiaries of the schemes via video conferencing. He also said that the government has been working by focusing on the “4-S” – Shiksha (education), Swasthya (health), Suraksha (security) and Swavalamban (self-reliance).

The move was met with a positive response on social media.

One hopes that this isn’t the only move aimed toward women and girl children in the state.