With International Women's Day right around the corner, several brands and organisations are scrambling to come up with 'women-centric' initiatives to show the world that they care about women. While some companies come up with gimmicky stunts, a recent move by the Noida Metro Rail Corporation (NMRC) has truly warmed our hearts.
In a much-needed initiative, the NMRC has decided to provide sanitary pads free of cost at all 21 Noida-Greater Noida Metro stations, beginning March 8. In fact, they will also designate two Metro stations Sector 76 in Noida and Pari Chowk in Greater Noida as "pink stations".
"Besides the cosmetic changes, these pink stations will have facilities like baby-feeding room, diaper-changing facilities and a vanity-cum-changing room," an NMRC official said. And that's not all! To ensure that those 'pink stations' are truly safe spaces for women, the NMRC is also aiming at having only women staff on these two stations.
"Except for the security personnel, a job outsourced to a private firm, all other staff will be female on these stations," the official added.
So how can women get these sanitary pads at the stations? All they need is their metro card/token! "Any commuter will have to get a token at the metro station which could be used at the vending machine to get a sanitary pad absolutely free of cost," the official said.
This thoughtful initiative will be inaugurated on March 8 by Ritu Maheshwari, Managing Director of the NMRC. The cost of the sanitary pads will be borne by real estate group Ace. "Ace Studio, part of the Ace group, will bear the expenses of sanitary pads for one year," a company spokesperson said.
In a country where sanitary pads are sold in black plastic bags, this is a welcome move towards de-stigmatising menstrual health. We just hope this move sets an example for other organisations in India to follow suit, and that menstruation no longer remains a 'taboo' topic.
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