Govt. to provide sanitary napkins

Sanitary napkins will now be provided to young girls in rural areas at Re.1 per pack to promote menstrual hygiene in the country, GoI’s Health ministry has approved a Rs 150 crore scheme under NRHM. A pack of six high quality sanitary napkins will be provided to below poverty line adolescent girls in rural areas at Re.1. Above poverty line girls will be charged Rs.5 per pack, a ministry official said. A total of 235 districts have been identified as ‘focus districts’ and workers will be recruited in them. ¬†ASHA are likely to be involved in distribution of sanitary napkins with an incentive of Re.1 for every pack they distribute. However this is an option and state governments could develop alternative mechanisms.

The scheme will be implemented in three phases

In the first year, the programme will be implemented in 150 districts, which is 25 percent of the country. Of these, 30 districts will be from the four southern states, Maharashtra and Gujarat, and 120 districts will be in the northern, central and north-eastern states. The first phase is expected to cover over 1.5 crore girls with approximately 30 percent of them being below the poverty line.

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