In Madhya Pradesh, an NGO named Anivarya tried to show Lord Ganesha as a responsible husband by making a Ganesha idol holding sanitary napkins to spread awareness about menstrual hygiene. The NGO went by the ritual and placed Goddesses Riddhi and Siddhi on the sides. The organisation has installed the idol in its office in Mhow town in the state; the NGO works to spread awareness on menstrual hygiene and distributes sanitary pads.
Distributed Nearly 20 Lakh Sanitary Napkins
News18 quoted Ankit Bagdi, a young author and the Founder of the NGO, "After the movie Bahubali hit the theatres, the Lord has appeared in Bahubali avtar (image), so I thought why can't he take this message forward on menstrual hygiene". He further added that as we are already celebrating 'Azadi ka Mahotsav', he came up with the idea of devoting the theme of the festival to women's freedom from menstrual hassles. Ankit Bagdi has distributed nearly 20 lakh sanitary napkins since April last year by using his savings.
Menstrual Hygiene Condition In India
According to several surveys conducted by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare in 2002, 2005, 2008 and 2012, maximum problems relating to menstrual hygiene in India are preventable. However, they are still prevalent owing to little awareness and poor hygiene management. The data shows that adolescents have suffered severe ailments because of unhygienic practices. India reports almost 60,000 deaths due to cervical cancer, and two-thirds of 40,000 deaths are due to poor menstrual hygiene. Moreover, roughly 1,20,000 adolescents in the country suffer from menstrual dysfunctions that affect their daily chores.
Other health issues associated with the ill-maintenance of menstrual hygiene are anaemia, extended or shortened periods, infections in the reproductive tract, and anxiety and embarrassment. India houses a 355 million menstruating population, out of which only 42.6 million have access to sanitary napkins. The Union Government has given menstrual hygiene a high importance status in the ongoing Swachh Bharat Abhiyan.