The Centre's proposal to provide free sanitary napkins to women living below poverty line is welcome. Many poor women and young girls suffer from unhygienic conditions because they cannot afford good quality napkins. Even women who belong to the middle class hesitate to buy branded napkins. One hopes the scheme will be implemented. It will go a long way in improving personal hygiene. The corporate world should contribute to the cause.

Arun Babanrao Khore,

Pune

The decision is an important step forward in promoting public health. Girls do not attend school during their monthly periods because they cannot afford sanitary napkins. It is also one of the major causes of depression among them. They are forced to use old pieces of cloth. This leads to infections in the reproductive system. Young girls and women do not seek health care facility because of social stigma and, ultimately, the problems get worsened. It is the responsibility of all stakeholders to ensure that the scheme is implemented.

Dr. (Major) D.J. Borah,

Thiruvananthapuram

It is not enough to supply sanitary napkins free of cost or at subsidised rates. Most rural households do not have toilets. Massive community toilets should be constructed with water facilities. Rural and urban local bodies, service-minded NGOs, self-help groups and PDS outlets should be involved in the construction of toilets, distribution of napkins and creating awareness among the target groups.

S.S. Abdul Azeez,

Muscat

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