Sanitary pad vending machine for women
“In the past few years, we have observed that several NGOs have come forward to work towards making the Wari procession eco-friendly and several other awareness campaigns have been held during these processions. But menstrual health has never been talked about,” said Rahatkar.
PUNE: The Maharashtra State Commission for Women (MSCW) will install sanitary napkin vending machine and incinerators on a mobile vehicle which will be available on both Wari procession routes this time.
Chairperson of State Women Commission, Vijaya Rahatkar announced on Wednesday that the commission will also distribute 50,000 sanitary napkins to women participating in Wari in next 15 days.
This will be part of ‘Wari Nari Shakti’ initiative that will be launched at Shanivarwada on Thursday.
State Finance Minister Sudhir Mungantiwar, Women and Child Welfare Development Minister Pankaja Munde, Mayor Mukta Tilak, Sadanand More, Shiv Sena Spokesperson Neelam Gorhe and actress Nivedita Joshi Saraf will be present.
“In the past few years, we have observed that several NGOs have come forward to work towards making the Wari procession eco-friendly and several other awareness campaigns have been held during these processions. But menstrual health has never been talked about,” said Rahatkar. “So this time, in a bid to promote women empowerment we have undertaken the initiative to distribute sanitary napkins as well as have installed vending machine and incinerators for easy and eco-friendly disposal of used sanitary napkins,” said Rahatkar.
While only a few female warkaris might be in the age group of the menstrual cycle who complete the walk till the end, there are around 60-70 per cent floating population which participates in the Wari procession for a day or two. An associate to Rahatkar said that the target audience is these women from the 70 per cent floating population and also the women in those villages where these Warkaris stop for rest, as these rural areas are underprivileged. And the women in these villages don’t have much knowledge and awareness about sanitary napkins and its use.
Speaking about the convenience for women to change, Rahatkar informed that there are around 1,700 toilets in total on both routes, so women will be facilitated accordingly.
Apart from this, a special Dindi for women empowerment will include a Chitra Rath (mobile vehicle) to create awareness about laws for women, health and hygiene and use of sanitary napkins. Women of the Muslim community will also be present to raise awareness among warkaris.
Films based on women empowerment like Dangal, Damini, Toilet Ek Prem Katha and some selected short films will be shown to the warkaris on the way to Pandharpur. Also, various programmes like Kirtan, Povada and Bharud will be organised on the theme. Eminent and strong woman personalities from various fields, Marathi film celebrities, doctors, sportsman, architects, lawyers, women entrepreneurs, war widows amongst others will participate in awareness programmes.