Sanitary pad vending machines to bridge rural-urban health gap

Amritsar: A low-cost sanitary napkin was launched on Monday by the Amritsar administration, which would be available through vending machines installed at several government schools across the district for rural and urban household girls.

The introduction of a cheaper alternative to the expensive and non-biodegradable sanitary napkins in the market would be a blessing to girls in the menstruating age group.

Ravi Bhagat, the deputy commissioner of Amritsar, who initiated this idea, said that the purpose of the project was to bring a revolution in the hygiene levels of these young girls.

The pads, called ‘NAARI V CARE’, are being produced with the help of machines by the Nari Niketan inmates. The district administration had already been training the inmates in stitching, embroidery and tailoring, as Bhagat informed.

“NAARI stands for ‘Nari Niketan and Red Cross Initiative’,” said Bhagat.

A five-pad packet will be priced at Rs 10 while a packet of two pads will cost Rs 5.

He added that a certain number of pads will be distributed among the district girls for free.

The poor state of physical health in rural adolescent girls appalled Bhagat, who understood this to be the cause of poor immunity and multiple health problems.

Thus, this initiative would help to bring in an overall development of the district’s women, as it seeks to bridge the huge health options gap between girls from rural and urban backgrounds.

According to the DC, the decision to install the napkin vending machines in schools was taken as most girls felt too shy to purchase them from shops.

“With this unique skill set added to their kitty, the Nari Niketan inmates will be able to generate a good livelihood for themselves as a part of the sale proceeds will go to them,” said Bhagat. (image: