19 lakh female students set to benefit by Karnataka Govt’s Shuchi scheme | Education - Hindustan Times

Karnataka govt re-launches Shuchi scheme, around 19 lakh female students to be provided sanitary napkins free of cost

Mar 01, 2024 07:59 AM IST

The State Health Minister said that the sanitary napkins are important for the health of female students, and most students from poor families can’t afford it.

After being stalled for the last four years, the Karnataka Government on Wednesday re-started the Shuchi scheme for menstrual hygiene by supplying sanitary napkins to around 19 lakh adolescent girls at the school and college levels.

Karnataka Health Minister Dinesh Gundu Rao said that the Shuchi scheme is important for the hygiene and health of female students. (HT Photo)
Karnataka Health Minister Dinesh Gundu Rao said that the Shuchi scheme is important for the hygiene and health of female students. (HT Photo)

According to officials, through the relaunched scheme, the Karnataka Health Department will provide free sanitary napkins to around 19 lakh girls (aged 10 to 18 years) in government and aided schools and colleges across the state.

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The health department will directly deliver sanitary pads to the schools which will be distributed to the female students by the heads. Each kit would have 10 sanitary napkins in a pack. Napkins required for one year will be given to the female students.

Health Minister Dinesh Gundu Rao said that the scheme is important for the hygiene and health of female students.

Earlier, the project was started by the previous Siddaramaiah-led state government.

Rao said he didn’t know why such an important project was stopped by the successive (BJP-led) government.

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"In the Congress government, after I became the Health Minister, I had announced that the scheme would be revived," he said.

“While the Congress government has implemented Shakti and Gruha Lakshmi Scheme in favour of women, the Shuchi Yojana, which was started with a collective vision for girls' health, cannot be ignored,” he added.

“We are providing free sanitary napkins to 19 lakh school and college girls at a cost of 47 crores, as girls from very poor families cannot afford it,” Rao said.

The Minister also emphasized that menstruation is a natural process and that there is no need for girls to be hesitant about this. He pointed out there are some superstitions attached to it and it is important to get rid of them and create awareness about cleanliness and the use of sanitary napkins.

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Cleanliness and scientific management of menstruation are important for girls' health, he added.

“As an alternative to sanitary pads, we have implemented a pilot program in two districts to distribute menstrual cups under Shuchi Yojana. Menstrual cups are eco-friendly and the project has received a good response,” Rao said.

The Health Minister also said that the health department will take up a program to create more awareness about the use of menstrual cups instead of sanitary pads.

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