Good news for women! The Narendra Modi-led government on Tuesday has taken a major step of slashing the price of its biodegradable sanitary napkins ‘Suvidha’, which are sold from Jan Aushadhi Kendras from Rs.2.50 to Rs 1 per piece. Further, the Jan Aushadhi Sugam mobile app has also been launched, making it easier to locate Jan Aushadi stores along with information and details related to medicines available at these stores.
Launching the event, Union Minister of Chemicals and Fertilizers D V Sadananda Gowda termed it as one of ‘the greatest achievements by PM Narendra Modi’.
Union Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan tweeted, “Excellent decision that empowers women and helps maintain menstrual hygiene. Sanitary napkins at Rs 1 through Jan Aushadhi stores. These biodegradable napkins, available in a pack of four, will be sold at a subsidised price under brand ‘Suvidha’ at 5500 outlets.”
While these initiatives are undoubtedly a big boost by the Narendra Modi led government for women across all sections of the society, it cannot be ignored that many Indians are still reluctant to discuss openly about sanitary napkins disposal, biodegradable sanitary napkins and so on.
The latest move of slashing the price of Suvidha sanitary napkins can prove to be an ice breaker of sorts, establishing more awareness among women, rural and urban, about the benefits of using environment-friendly, low-cost sanitary napkins. Over 1.30 crore sanitary napkins have been sold at the Jan Aushadhi stores till July 31st, 2019.
Let’s take a look at some common questions that pop up in this context:
Are sanitary napkins biodegradable?
Keep in mind that not all sanitary napkins available in the market are biodegradable. However, due to more public awareness, biodegradable napkins are slowly finding its niche market in India.
What are biodegradable sanitary napkins?
The Jan Aushadhi Suvidha sanitary napkin is biodegradable. This means that upon discarding, it is totally biodegradable once it comes in contact with oxygen.
What does biodegradable really mean and why is it important?
Most of the packaged items that we use are not environment-friendly when we dispose or discard them. When we refer to biodegradable substances, we are referring to waste that is capable of decomposing through the process of bio-degradation after it is discarded.
Now all women’s in India has a reason to celebrate. Launched #PMBJP Jan Aushadhi Suvidha Sanitary Napkin all over India at Rs.1/- per pad, which is 100% #biodegradeable at #JanAushadhikendra, Safdarjung Hospital, New Delhi.#SafePeriods.#SuvidhaHuaSasta#Menstrualhygiene pic.twitter.com/Y2XQZYMXDF
— Sadananda Gowda (@DVSadanandGowda) August 27, 2019
Delivering as Promised!
Affordable, Eco-friendly and Hygienic.
To ensure the “Swasthya, Swachhta and Suvidha” of every woman, we proudly announce, #PMBJP’s Jan Aushadhi #Suvidha Sanitary Pads are now available at just ?1 per pad.#SuvidhaHuaSasta pic.twitter.com/mM4vCIobhl
— Mansukh Mandaviya (@mansukhmandviya) August 27, 2019
Excellent decision that empowers women & helps maintain #MenstrualHygiene !
Sanitary napkins at Rs 1 through Jan Aushadhi stores.These biodegradable napkins,available in a pack of four, will be sold at a subsidized price under brand ‘Suvidha’ at 5,500 outlets.@MoHFW_INDIA https://t.co/7tzm85xNBV
— Dr Harsh Vardhan (@drharshvardhan) August 28, 2019
Jan Aushadhi Sugam mobile App is the official app of #PMBJP. It is a platform where you can look for affordable and quality generic-medicines, locate your nearest Jan Aushadhi Kendra etc. Watch the video on how to use the APP https://t.co/1tXwnwgkBf
Download the app now. pic.twitter.com/sNTq81Tsbq
— Pradhan Mantri Bhartiya Janaushadhi Pariyojana (@pmbjpbppi) August 27, 2019
Decades ago, women in India barely spoke aloud the word ‘periods’ or ‘menstruation’ in their families, let alone discuss sanitary napkins. The ‘hush-hush’ social narrative has undergone a sea change in the last ten years, with more public awareness and widespread social acceptance on the use of sanitary napkins.
The Narendra Modi government’s push for a healthier and more fitness-oriented India has been one of its key themes right from May 2014.
Clearly, the latest initiative makes it clear that the beneficiaries are the women of India, particularly those struggling to buy sanitary napkins due to price constraints.
Therefore, the move to make biodegradable sanitary napkins most affordable is one that is in sync with the futuristic vision of ‘affordable and quality healthcare’ for all.
More power to such cost-friendly, environment-friendly initiatives that strengthen and promote women’s health in India!