Students Federation Of India demands the immediate withdrawal of the added taxation on sanitary napkins and ensure the maximum reach of the menstrual protection tools in lowest prices. In the recent GST of Modi government, sanitary pads are considered as luxury items and taxed accordingly, when the reality is that these are utter necessity of a woman for healthy life. In a study by AC Nielsen published in the International Research Journal of Social Sciences shows that among woman who does not use sanitary pads Reproductive Tract Infection (RTI) is 70% more common than those who have the access to it. The gynecologists involved in this study also claims use of tampons can reduce the risk of cervical cancer and many more diseases related to the reproductive system. But the ground reality of Indian menstrual health is shocking and disturbing. According to the same study only 12% of total woman in their menstrual age uses sanitary napkins, over 88% depends on the alternative unhygienic ways like unsanitised clothes, ashes and husk sand. This leads to a decline in productivity by 31%, where they miss average 2.2 days in their workplace, in North India over 30% of girls stopped going to school after the start of their menstrual cycle due to the lack of adequate sanitary products. 83% of these girl said that their family cannot afford sanitary pads, added to that there are problems of social taboo where even talking about Periods, free movement during these days are restricted with notion of purity and pollution . Now the further inflation in the prices will push away many more poor women and girls of this country from a healthy reproductive health.
In this context SFI will take up a "Bleed Without Fear, Bleed without Tax" campaign against this insensitive move where from 11th to 14th of July girls across the country will send sanitary pads with a message written against the Taxation and demanding adequate sanitation for woman including sanitary pad vending machines and providing girls in adolescent below poverty line to be provided with 6 packets of sanitary napkins, in rupee 1.
VP Sanu (President) Vikram Singh (General Secretary)