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#PeriodProblems: Why Are Sanitary Pads STILL Being Taxed?

#PeriodProblems: Why Are Sanitary Pads STILL Being Taxed?

When I was living alone, surviving on the little pocket money I had, I used to dread periods every month. And not just because of the unbearable pain and discomfort, but also because I knew I’d be spending 200 bucks on sanitary napkins. For some of you, spending that much money every month might not be a big deal or maybe it is. I don’t know. But girls, have you ever thought about women who haven’t used sanitary napkins ever? Women who can’t afford them? No, right?

Well, it’s time you do.

You might have seen #LahuKaLagaan trending on different social media platforms but if you don’t already know what it is, we’re happy to help.

What is the #LahuKaLagaan campaign?

#LahuKaLagaan is a campaign by SheSays India, a women’s rights organization, and its purpose is to make sanitary napkins tax-free. It’s a campaign to get the Indian Government, specifically Arun Jaitley, our Finance Minister, to exempt sanitary napkins from the new Goods and Services Taxes (GST).  


1 Sanitary Napkins

Image: SheSays India on Facebook

The campaign demands a few things from the Indian Government which are listed here, in this image.

2 Sanitary Napkins


Image: SheSays India on Facebook

Why is THIS campaign important?

According to SheSays India, our country’s population includes over 497 million women and only 12% women use sanitary napkins. 80% of women avoid using sanitary napkins because of the high cost in comparison to traditional methods. Not using sanitary napkins affects a woman’s menstrual hygiene, which leads to reproductive tract infections and other diseases.  

3 Sanitary Napkins

Image: SheSays India on Facebook


Is the Indian Government doing anything about it?

The #DontTaxMyPeriod petition was filed in 2016 and after SheSays India’s campaigns, making sanitary napkins tax-free was proposed during a council meeting. Soon after that, the Goods and Services Tax rates were declared at 12% tax on sanitary napkins and tampons, but items like bindis and sindoor were exempted. So yes, the fight is still on.

4 Sanitary Napkins

Image: SheSays India on Facebook

Here’s how you can support it!

SheSays India urges you to support this campaign by making people aware about it. A lot of celebrities took to Twitter to request Arun Jaitley to abolish taxes levied on sanitary napkins and just like them, you can show your support as well. These tweets will give you an idea about the uproar created by the decision:


1. There, someone said it.

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Source: Priya Sometimes on Twitter

2. This is a serious matter of concern.

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Source: Neha Poonia on Twitter


3. Our favourite comedian supports it too!

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Source: Kanan Gill on Twitter

4. #DontTaxMyPeriod

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Source: Bollywood Gandu on Twitter


5. Girliyapa’s satirical take on #LahuKaLagaan is bang on.

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Source: Girliyapa on Twitter

When I was a little girl, I had no clue about what menstruation was until I got my first period. My mother never told me about it and neither did anyone at school care enough to bring it up. And today, when I look back to that day, I feel extremely sad. Why? Well, the situation hasn’t changed much. We live in a society where periods are still a taboo and even though it’s a natural process that every woman goes through every month, people are still hesitant to talk about it. And of course, there’s a lot of noise being made about menstrual awareness – but it’s not enough.

We all need to make sure we talk about menstrual awareness as much as we can. So girls, support this campaign and spread the word. Do your bit to protest against #LahuKaLagaan and don’t just stop there. Continue doing it until we reach a stage where each and every woman in this country has access to basic hygiene amenities.


Images: SheSays India

So girls, support this campaign and spread the word.

24 May 2017

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