Rajasthan has started the distribution of free sanitary napkins to young girls on the occasion of Gandhi Jayanti. An estimated 3,75,256 teenage girls from class IX to XII would be given free sanitary napkins under the Rajasthan Kishori Swasthya Avom Swachhta Karyakram ( Rajasthan Teenage-Girl health and Hygiene Scheme)
The napkins would be distributed in two blocks of seven districts of the state. The districts include Jhalawar (Jhalarapatan and Khanpur), Dausa (Mahua and Dausa), Dholpur (Baseri and Dholpur blocks), Dungarpur (Sagwara and Dungarpur ) Sirohi ( Shivganj and Sirohi) And Churu (Tara Nagar and Churu). The state wide campaign is expected to begin from Primary Health Care Centres from where the girls can collect their napkins.
The campaign is not limited to school going girls but is also for those who do not attend schools. Of the total number of girls, at least 96696 school going girls would benefit while 78.558 others, many of whom fall under poverty line would also be benefitted.
In Rajasthan, the distribution of sanitary napkins is necessary because under the local custom and traditions, the girls and women are not allowed entry into the house during such periods. If she is allowed, she lives in complete seclusion with meager resources, including food, utensils and her bedding. She is not allowed to touch things, cook lest she pollutes them. As a part of local traditions, people also use cloth and reuse it at times post washing, which is not hygienic.